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2020 German Grand Prix Rd 11. Countdown


Will his stint at Williams hamper Russell's development as a driver?
Discussion started by Anderis , 19 July, 2020 21:56
Will his stint at Williams hamper Russell's development as a driver?
Anderis 19 July, 2020 21:56
I've been recently thinking about it. It's not so much that Williams is so bad nowadays but more about his team-mates. As Williams confirmed Russell and Latifi for 2021, this becomes increasingly more of a concern for George.

Kubica has turned out to be terribly off the pace after his accident and the long break from racing. And Latifi is in my opinion the least talented driver Williams have had in XXI century and possibly the least talented driver in F1 in the last several years. His pre-F1 record is very underwhelming and he's proven to be off the pace so far too- failing to qualify within 0.5 secs of Russell on all 3 occasions so far and finishing dead last every race.

What does it mean? George lacks a benchmark. He can outperform his team-mates by a clear margin while not even performing at his 100%. He can't really discover his weak points and areas he needs to work on. He might not even realise when he messes something up because there's not a competitive team-mate to show him up on the track. He will have little clue about when he needs to do better and how to achieve it.
Moreover, he will not be at his edge, forced to work his ass off in order to finish ahead of his team-mates. He will never know how much it takes to beat an average or above-average F1 driver. He will not know the pressure of fading into your team-mate's shade. He might get complacent from outpacing his team-mates so consistently.
He'll also not learn much from them as you would expect a young driver to learn from his team-mates, because he outclasses them so much there's not much to learn for him.

This would be an acceptable state for one season maybe as many great drivers started against a weaker team-mate initially (like Alonso) as there's much to learn in your rookie year regardless, but for 3 consecutive years- this is a lot of time and it might lead him not to confront his shortcomings and to develop some bad habits?

I don't remember any hot prospect like Russell to face such a weak team-mate set for so many consecutive years since his debut in F1. Do you think it will negatively affect his development? I'm genuinely concerned for him.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 19/07/2020 21:58 by Anderis.

Re: Will his stint at Williams hamper Russell's development as a driver?
Ozzy Osbone 19 July, 2020 22:33
I don't think so. I think he gives everything at every race. One of his motivations may be that he HAS to show his raw talent as he is in the worst car. I don't think it will harm his prospects and personally think we will see him in a Merc in 2022 if they are still in the championship.

Re: Will his stint at Williams hamper Russell's development as a driver?
j-s 20 July, 2020 00:52
I don't think it's ideal for him. Driving careers in F1 are short, and 2-3 years are a substantial amount of time to spend at the back of the grid.

I'm relatively certain that Russell would learn more in the front-running teams. Williams is an F1 backwater ATM. The team has some talent but nowhere near top shelf personnel. I think that may rub off on how Russell develops.

He may go to Merc relatively unscathed, though. We'll see.

Today's race against Latifi was not a highlight.

Re: Will his stint at Williams hamper Russell's development as a driver?
Matt Brown 20 July, 2020 02:18
Its just about impossible for Williams to sign a strong team mate for George , I mean what driver that is any good in their right mind would sign for Williams?

Remember Williams is the dead last team on the grid for three years in a row, no good drivers want to drive for them, that is why Russell has weak team mates, Williams are lucky they even have Russell.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 20/07/2020 02:20 by Matt Brown.

Re: Will his stint at Williams hamper Russell's development as a driver?
ihme 20 July, 2020 11:45
He constantly loses multiple positions during the first lap. His spacial awareness is (at least for me) a big issue. Then there are these small mistakes when the opportunity comes for scoring points like in Germany last year and now in Austria.
Maybe he was winning too much from the front in his junior career and these quirks weren't so obvious back then?
Kubica was indeed slower but it seemed like his racecraft and ability to cut throught traffic at the starts from his first stint in F1 were intact.

Re: Will his stint at Williams hamper Russell's development as a driver?
Andrew Hooper 20 July, 2020 15:13
Spatial awareness if that was an issue he would not have done well in any of the previous Formula classes that he won in. I have no concern about him as a driver as the skills you have to develop to do say well in F2 are the same as you have to have in F1 but in F1 they are just raised to another level.

Just remember what he is like when he is a Mercedes testing. His lap times are such that it shows that he has the skills to drive a well handling car at a very competitive pace.

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