After coming so agonisingly close to scoring his first points with Williams Racing last season at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix – crashing out under the safety car whilst he was in a points scoring position, George Russell will be looking forward to bounce back from mistakes learned from last season in a track that the British team performed well at in 2020.
Russell enjoys driving at Imola, the fast-flowing nature ensuring that all the drivers have to show high levels of commitment to record a quick lap. The ‘older style’ tracks have a bit of character that some of the circuits that have been designed more recently may not – this culminates in Russell’s delight at the track being back on the circuit.
“Imola is a fantastic circuit; it’s very fast and you really need to be committed. It also has a lot of character that the newer tracks sometimes lack, and you feel that when you’re bouncing over the kerbs. I’m very happy that the track is back on the calendar this season.”
Russell doesn’t exactly remember his time last year at Imola too fondly – crashing out under a late safety car emphasising the point that if you make a mistake on the track your out of the race. As negative as this may sound, this is what racing is all about and learning about these mistakes will be crucial to come away from the weekend feeling content.
“I made what is probably the biggest mistake of my career at Imola in 2020 when crashing under the safety car. It’s a track where, if you make a mistake, you’re out. But that’s what racing should be about! I’ll look to try and rectify my mistake from last year with a good result this weekend.”
“Having all three practice sessions will be useful” – Nicholas Latifi
Nicholas Latifi finished last season’s Emilia Romagna Grand Prix in an impressive eleventh place, with the car performing well and Williams going on the record to state that they are targeting specific Grand Prix, it is not beyond the realms of possibility that Imola is indeed one of these targeted races for the team based in Grove.
Latifi is looking forward to returning to Imola for the second successive season, this time not as a rookie. As previously mentioned this was one of the Canadians best races in terms of finishing positions so will be looking to go one position better and finish in the points.
“I’m excited to hit the track at Imola; it was a circuit that seemed to suit our car quite well last year and I had one of my best results of the season in the race.”
The Canadian is curios to see how this years car performs – after all the running has been done at the Bahrain International Circuit which was heavily impacted by winds from different directions. Last year the weekend was a shorter 2-day weekend with only one practice session so to have three times the amount of time to perfect set-ups and get used to the car which should allow for a positive weekend.
“I’m curious to see how the car is going to perform there, especially after a weekend of inconsistent conditions in Bahrain with the wind. Having all three practice sessions will be useful, as last year we only had the one, so we’ll be able to build the weekend from there and hopefully we can be competitive and have a good race.”