George Russell had a relatively lonely United States Grand Prix last Sunday, with the Briton ending down in fourteenth despite making a good start from the back of the grid.
The Williams Racing driver went into the race at the Circuit of the Americas twentieth and last on the grid after taking an engine penalty, but by the end of lap one he had found his way up fourteenth, and although he would profit from retirements ahead of him, he would end up in the same position as faster cars found their way ahead.
Overall, Russell, who will join the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team in 2022, admitted it was a tricky weekend in the United States for the Williams team, but he was happy that the Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN team also failed to score points in their battle for eighth place in the Constructors’ Championship.
“I had some good fun today but we didn’t really have the pace this weekend to challenge for the points paying positions,” said Russell. “I made a good start and moved from P20 up to P14 but was then struggling to keep Fernando (Alonso) and Sebastian (Vettel) behind me.
“Once they were past it was a long, lonely race from then on in. It was a tricky weekend overall but none of our rivals scored any points so it’s onwards to Mexico.”
“My race came undone in the first corner” – Nicholas Latifi
Team-mate Nicholas Latifi saw his race compromised at the very first corner, with the Canadian making contact with his countryman Lance Stroll as he found himself sandwiched between cars heading into the turn.
The contact with the Aston Martin Cognizant Formula One Team driver left him at the back of the field and with a damaged front wing, with an early pit stop for a replacement meant he was in for a lonely and long race, although he did manage to end the day in fifteenth, ahead of both of the Uralkali Haas F1 Team drivers.
“Unfortunately, my race came undone in the first corner,” said Latifi. “One of the Haas cars made a lunge up the inside, and I could tell I was going to become sandwiched.
“Sadly, I was in the middle of a pack of cars so there wasn’t much I could do as it was too late to back out. I picked up some front-wing damage and that meant I had to pit much earlier than we wanted to, so our second and third stints were then much longer than ideal.
“I think our pace was also impacted by trying to keep the tyres in the right window, which I’m sure was a challenge for everybody, so it was definitely a race to learn from.”