George Russell admits that he has one goal this weekend, reaching Q2 in qualifying and scoring points for Williams on Sunday, after a promising Friday.
It was already a good weekend for Williams in Imola, both cars reached Q2, and the pace was good. However, the race was a completely different story, both Nicholas Latifi and Russell crashed out of the race, and the chance of scoring points faded away.
“The wind picked up in the afternoon, and it’s no secret that we struggle when the wind picks up, which is unfortunate,” Russell said. “But I think FP2 was the worst of it, it shouldn’t be getting any worse tomorrow, and from Sunday everything should calm down. It’s incredibly exposed, and it’s very undulating here so that if you do get a gust of wind, you feel it.
“That’s just the weakness of our car, we have to deal with it, make the most of it, and I felt FP2 was far from our potential, and we were still 13th or 14th and not a million miles away. And the high fuel pace looked half decent, so we’re in reasonable shape.
“I don’t want to overpromise and underdeliver, but naturally, if the wind dies down we will improve, and P2 was probably the worst of it. Hopefully, that was the worst-case scenario in FP2, which was 13th. So Q2 is a minimum I hope and fighting hopefully for points on Sunday.”
Not only Russell is happy about today’s performance, but he also reckons that the team has done a great step forward compared to last season.
“Naturally the car has moved forward, the team is looking in great shape. Rome isn’t built in a day, but everything is heading in the right direction.
“And I’m filled with lots of confidence following the race at the end of last season and then the races at the start of this year – two really strong performances personally and for the team which we’re just thriving off one another, to be honest. So that’s positive and I think are getting the most out of our package and I’m pleased with that.”