Difficult Friday in Austria for George
George secured P5 ahead of the F1 Sprint despite a crash in Austria.
Due to the modified Sprint format, teams only had one practice session to perfect their set-up ahead of Qualifying.
George immediately took to the track in FP1 on a set of Medium Pirelli tyres, placing into P9 with a 1.11.175 on his first run before quickly improving into P8.
An early red flag 21 minutes into the session as Lando Norris stopped on track sent the entire field back into the pits as his McLaren was recovered.
When the session resumed, George set a 1.07.852 to slot himself into P6 before returning to the pits to switch onto the Soft tyres.
Before George was able to re-join the session, a brief second red flag flew as debris was removed but resumed with 13 minutes on the track.
Making good use of the final minutes, George set his best lap time of 1.06.702 to move into P3 where he ended the all-important FP1 session.
In Q1, George set out on the Soft tyres, slotting into P4 on his first flying lap before being pushed down into P7 as the rest of the field delivered their fastest laps.
Setting his best lap time of 1.06.235, George secured his place in Q2 in P7.
For Q2, George wasted no time getting out on track to put in his best time of 1.06.235 and take him into P3.
George kept his P3 position until the final minutes of the session before being pushed down into P5 but safely advancing into Q3.
In the final qualifying session, George initially set a 1.05.452 lap time to take him into P3 but was knocked down the timings into P5.
A crash for Lewis Hamilton brought out the red flag with only five minutes left on the clock, sending the grid back into the pits.
Once the session resumed, George was first to re-join the session but, unfortunately, crashed at Turn 10 on his outlap, ending his Qualifying early.
Despite the crash, George secured P5 for Saturday’s Sprint.
George Russell – Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One™ Team Driver
I think that was our best qualifying session of the year in terms of pure pace - and the worst in terms of the outcome. Racing can be like that sometimes. I could have been P4 this afternoon and I was one tenth up on my lap, and absolutely went for it because I thought there was a chance of P3. I'm feeling fine physically - but I'm concerned about the car. I hope we can recover it. In terms of performance, there are positive signs. We have brought some things to the car, and the interpretation of some rules has probably been in our favour, too. Lewis was doing a phenomenal job and absolutely flying today. Maybe I went a bit the wrong direction on set-up for qualifying; but hopefully that will be good for the race. Ordinarily we have better race pace than single lap, so hopefully tomorrow, we can make up for today.