‘You can shout’: George Russell questioned by ex-F1 champion for radio outburst

George Russell argued over the radio that the Hards were the wrong tyre during the Mexican Grand Prix.

George Russell endured a disappointing Mexican Grand Prix, after finishing in fourth place despite having started in second.

The British driver had looked strong all weekend at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, where he even managed to top both FP2 and FP3.

With the 24-year-old qualifying second behind Max Verstappen, many tipped Russell as the Dutchman’s main threat for victory in Mexico City.

Alas, Russell was anything but a threat, after making a poor start which saw the Mercedes driver slip from second to fourth, behind both Lewis Hamilton and Sergio Pérez.

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Whilst his launch was good, the British driver was left on the outside at the opening corner, before having little room at the next two corners, which saw the former Williams driver mugged by his team-mate and Pérez.

That was basically it in regard to the action at the front, as the drivers were unable to run close together due to the thin air causing overheating issues.

Tyre degradation also wasn’t a concern, which left Mercedes regretting their strategy after opting to go from the Mediums to the Hards.

This strategy proved to be too conservative, as both Russell and Hamilton struggled on the hardest compound.

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Red Bull opted for an ultra-aggressive Soft-Medium strategy, which saw both Verstappen and Pérez manage the same lap-times as the Mercedes duo, whilst managing their rubber also.

Russell was very frustrated with his team for fitting the Hard compound for his second stint, after complaining several times over the radio that it wasn’t the right choice.

The Brit wanted to run his opening stint as deep as possible before switching late on for a set of Softs; however, would’ve most likely found himself well behind the top three by the time he emerged from the pits.

2009 World Champion Jenson Button labelled the team’s decision as a “tough one”, but that ultimately Russell just had to “work it hard” rather than “shout”.

“George was really happy on the medium tyre, he wanted to go longer, the team put the hard tyre on and it just didn’t work for him,” said Button on Sky Sports’ Any Driven Monday programme.

“It is a tough one. You can shout as much as you want on the radio but there’s no other direction from there.

“You’ve just got to work it hard and see if you can get the tyres working. It’s a toughie – maybe they should have gone for the even longer medium tyre and stick on the soft at the end, which we saw work really well for Daniel Ricciardo.”

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Russell explained after the race that the team should’ve opted to start himself and Hamilton on the Softs, but that actually he probably wouldn’t have been able to switch to the softest compound late on due to his Mediums being “quite damaged”.

“In hindsight, starting on the softs and going to the medium was the right thing to do,” said the Brit.

“Starting on the medium and going to the softs was a bit more difficult because my medium was already quite damaged from the early couple of laps.”