Russell regrets mistakes at Canadian GP as ‘missed opportunity’

George Russell admitted that numerous mistakes during the Canadian Grand Prix may have cost him victory.

Russell regrets mistakes at Canadian GP as
Russell regrets mistakes at Canadian GP as Russell swerved after contact with Oscar Piastri in the final moments of the race (Image credit: @F1 in X)

Starting from pole position after setting the fastest time during Saturday’s qualifying session, Russell maintained the race lead in the early stages of the 70-lap event.

Trying hard to keep Red Bull’s Max Verstappen and McLaren’s Lando Norris behind, the Briton wore out his intermediate tires faster than those around him. This allowed Norris to snatch P1 from his compatriot on lap 21, and Russell’s problems continued as he went wide at the final chicane and handed second position to the lurking Verstappen.

But Russell’s error-filled afternoon didn’t end there. There was no denying that the 26-year-old had the pace to win, as he opted to switch to a new set of medium tires on lap 45 as the track dried out. He passed Norris again to claim P2, only to lose the position two laps later when he again went wide at the sector one chicane.

One more error completed a trio of errors for the British pilot. While trying to overtake Oscar Piastri with a few laps remaining, Russell made contact with the McLaren and, instead of moving up a position, lost a place to his teammate Lewis Hamilton.

He eventually overtook Hamilton and Piastri to take the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team’s first Grand Prix podium in 2024, but was understandably disappointed with his driving.

paid the price

Speaking after the race, Russell felt he was unable to make the most of a fast W15 at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. He said: “It felt like a missed opportunity. We were very fast with the intermediates at the beginning, then Lando recovered.

“Then we put the slick tires back on. I made a couple of mistakes, overstepped my bounds, and paid the price for it.

“However, first podium of the year. We really had a fast car this weekend and to be in the mix fighting for the win was really fun. “That’s what F1 is about and that’s why we’re going to compete,” Russell added.

The Briton was confident he could have challenged Verstappen for victory, but is still happy with the progress he and Mercedes made in Canada. He continued: “We had the rhythm. Max was very strong, but when we put the medium on at the end, we were very fast.

“That mistake with Oscar when I tried to overtake him and lost a position to Lewis, it cost us at least second position and maybe we could have thought with Max later in the race. But we will take everything positive from this weekend.”

Formula 1 will return in a fortnight for the Spanish Grand Prix, starting at 2pm BST (3pm local time) on Sunday 23 June. Will Russel and Mercedes continue their recovery in Europe?

Featured Image Credit: Getty Images