George Completes Historic #Race1000 in Shanghai
George Russell finished P16 for ROKiT Williams Racing in the Chinese Grand Prix, competing in a milestone event for Formula One at the 1000th World Championship race.
George made a good start from P17 on the grid, to move himself up into P15 early on and into the thick of the midfield action.
The Briton started on the Medium compound tyre and enjoyed some on-track battles in the initial stages of the race, hanging on to the pack ahead and showing more encouraging signs for the team.
George pitted for Hard tyres on Lap 22 of the race, having run as high at P13 in the race as the different pit strategies began to unfold.
He used the hardest compound tyre to run a long middle stint of the race, before pitting once more for the Soft tyres on Lap 49 to complete his two-stop strategy.
Once again, George was the lead ROKiT Williams Racing Driver across the line at the end of the Grand Prix, finishing P16 at the chequered flag ahead of team-mate Robert Kubica in P17.
George Russell - ROKiT Williams Racing Driver:
"The pace was slightly better than expected. We were battling in the opening couple of laps and managed to stay with the pack. Once things settled down, the gaps started to open and it was a fairly lonely race for me.
We were struggling with the tyres in the middle stint of the race and the lap times were dropping off, so it was the right choice to pit for a second time. At the end of the day, this is where we are at the moment. We must keep pushing and keep working"
Dave Robson - ROKiT Williams Racing Senior Race Engineer:
"We had an enjoyable race today and were able to race a couple of cars who had found themselves a little out of position following first lap incidents. We had clean, well-driven races from both drivers and were able to execute a sensible one-stop strategy with Robert.
We tried a similar strategy with George – but the length of the stint and the loss of some tyre temperature meant that ultimately we opted to pit George for a second time and allow him to finish the race on a new qualifying tyre.
We have made some improvements to the car this weekend and have started to close the gap. We also tested some new components which may help us close the gap further in the coming races."
The next round of the Formula One World Championship will take place in Baku for the Azerbaijan Grand Prix on 26 – 28 April.
Photographs Courtesy of XPB Images
Additional Press Content Courtesy of ROKiT Williams Racing