Williams has "no criticism" about Russell's move at Imola

Williams Formula 1 team principal Simon Roberts insists the team has “no concern” over George Russell’s attempt to pass Valtteri Bottas which led to the pair crashing at Imola.

Williams has "no criticism" about Russell's move at Imola

Russell lost control and slid into the Finn’s Mercedes when he made a move on the outside heading into the first chicane.

Both cars crashed heavily, and Mercedes boss Toto Wolff subsequently made it clear that he was not happy that Russell had tried what he felt was a risky pass and triggered the crash.

Williams had already lost the car of Nicholas Latifi in an accident, and so finished the day with two badly damaged FW43B cars.

Despite the obvious frustrations stemming from both the damage and lost points-scoring opportunity, Roberts says that Russell was right to have attempted the pass on Bottas.

“It's very difficult isn't it?” Roberts admitted. “You've got a driver, he was in a good position, his track position was on merit. I’ve watched the video of him coming out of Turn 18, in my mind there's absolutely no question that [it] looked like an overtake was on.

“So we have absolutely no concern or criticism of what George did, we think that [it] was the right thing to do.

“Clearly it didn't work out, and there's reasons for that. And it's easy in hindsight to roll back and get into minutiae. But for me it goes back to the exit of Turn 18. It was a good exit, he got traction, he was in the slipstream, he had DRS. Why wouldn't you go for it? But the track was wet on the right-hand side. As I say, really easy in hindsight.

“That was the conversation I remember having with George. That's what we expected him to do. It was good. It didn't work out, it didn't work out for him, it didn't work out for us. That's racing.”

Read Also:

Roberts denied the suggestion that it was an aggressive move by Russell.

“I don't think it was particularly aggressive, to be honest. I don't know what people see,” he said. “I was watching the onboard at the time. That wasn't in my book an aggressive, pushy move. But it didn't end well, and I can't get away from that, and neither can George.”

Roberts is hopeful that the pace of the car at Imola, where both drivers comfortably made Q2, can be repeated.

“Certainly that track suited our car and the conditions,” he said. “Not the wet, but the track in general and the layout definitely suited what we took along that weekend.

“If you look back, in Bahrain the car looked like it had made less progress. In reality we’re somewhere between the two. There was nothing special there, that was our car on that day and that weekend with our drivers. Nicholas was quick too.

“So our hope and expectation is there will be other events this year where we're in at least as good a position, maybe better, depending on lots of things. It's a combination isn't it? It's the track, it's the weather, it's the tyres, it's all got to chime in. But it did for us that weekend, until the race.

“I'm really pleased that we could show that there's been really good progress made over winter, and it's nice not only for the fans but also everyone back at the factory to see that the car can get up in the midfield. To be fighting for P9 was great, it was really fabulous.”

shares
comments

Related video

Red Bull "very brave" to develop own F1 engine - Brown
Previous article

Red Bull "very brave" to develop own F1 engine - Brown

Next article

Alfa Romeo asks FIA to review Raikkonen's Imola penalty

Alfa Romeo asks FIA to review Raikkonen's Imola penalty
Why it's Red Bull that really leads a three-way fight so far at Silverstone Prime

Why it's Red Bull that really leads a three-way fight so far at Silverstone

After a slow start to Friday at Silverstone, all the Formula 1 teams had to effectively cram in a day’s worth of practice into one hour. But there was still plenty to learn and while Ferrari topped the times, a three-way battle is brewing ahead of the British Grand Prix

Verstappen exclusive: Why F1's champion isn't fazed by Silverstone return Prime

Verstappen exclusive: Why F1's champion isn't fazed by Silverstone return

Max Verstappen is the world’s number one racing driver… and he’s determined to keep it that way. Speaking exclusively to GP Racing's OLEG KARPOV, the Red Bull driver explains why he’s relishing the 2022 championship battle with Charles Leclerc – and why he’s not worried about returning to Silverstone, the scene of the biggest accident of his career last year

Formula 1
Jun 30, 2022
Why Red Bull’s RB17 hypercar can help its F1 team Prime

Why Red Bull’s RB17 hypercar can help its F1 team

On Tuesday, Red Bull laid out its plans to develop and build a new hypercar - the RB17 - penned by Adrian Newey. As the project itself sates Newey as a creative outlet, it also offers Red Bull's Formula 1 team a number of new and exciting avenues to pursue.

Formula 1
Jun 29, 2022
What to expect from Mercedes as F1 returns to Silverstone Prime

What to expect from Mercedes as F1 returns to Silverstone

OPINION: The British Grand Prix is a home event for Lewis Hamilton and George Russell, with their Mercedes team based just a few miles away too. But there’s another reason why the Silver Arrows squad is eager to arrive at Silverstone this weekend, which may help it fix its remaining problems with its 2022 Formula 1 challenger .

Formula 1
Jun 29, 2022
Inside AlphaTauri’s Faenza F1 factory Prime

Inside AlphaTauri’s Faenza F1 factory

AlphaTauri’s mission in F1 is to sell clothes and train young drivers rather than win the championship – but you still need a cutting-edge factory to do that. Team boss Franz Tost takes GP Racing’s Oleg Karpov on a guided tour of a facility that’s continuing to grow.

Formula 1
Jun 26, 2022
Connecting two of Ferrari's favourite F1 sons: Villeneuve and Leclerc Prime

Connecting two of Ferrari's favourite F1 sons: Villeneuve and Leclerc

Gilles Villeneuve's exploits behind the wheel of a Ferrari made him a legend to the tifosi, even 40 years after his death. The team's current Formula 1 star Charles Leclerc enjoys a similar status, and recently got behind the wheel of a very special car from the French-Canadian’s career.

Formula 1
Jun 24, 2022
How a 30cm metal wire triggered open warfare in the F1 paddock Prime

How a 30cm metal wire triggered open warfare in the F1 paddock

Porpoising has become the key talking point during the 2022 Formula 1 season, as teams battle to come to terms with it. An FIA technical directive ahead of the Canadian Grand Prix and a second stay appearing on the Mercedes cars only served to create a bigger debate and raise tensions further

Formula 1
Jun 23, 2022
Does Max Verstappen have any weaknesses left? Prime

Does Max Verstappen have any weaknesses left?

Having extended his Formula 1 points lead with victory in Canada, Max Verstappen has raised his game further following his 2021 title triumph. Even on the days where Red Bull appears to be second best to Ferrari, Verstappen is getting the most out of the car in each race. So, does he have any weaknesses that his title rivals can exploit?

Formula 1
Jun 22, 2022