P3 for George after ‘incredible’ qualifying in Sochi
George claims a brilliant P3 ahead of Formula One’s Russian Grand Prix.
Due to heavy rain, the morning FP3 session was cancelled, and the grid eagerly awaited the afternoon qualifying session and an improvement in track conditions.
With standing water and tricky conditions, George and the majority of the field began Q1 on the Intermediate compound Pirelli tyres.
On his first run, George put in a 1:57.636 as he attempted to navigate his way around the slippery circuit, putting himself into P15 before dropping into P16 and the elimination zone.
In the final moments of Q1, the British driver was able to improve on his previous lap time to put in a 1.48.303, taking him up to P11 and safely into Q2.
In Q2, with a still drying circuit, George opted to continue on the Intermediate tyres.
George steadily made his way through the session, setting a 1:47.735 lap time and sat in P13 with four minutes remaining in Q2.
As the chequered flag waved, George improved on his previous lap time to hoist him out of the elimination zone and into P9 and Q3.
In the final Q3 session, George began the session on the Intermediate tyres but, with the track continuing to dry, quickly opted to switch to the Soft tyres and starting a flurry of stops for the rest of the field to make the change.
With only two minutes remaining, George put in his first run of a 1.55.030 and take him into P10.
With the chequered flag out, George delivered his best lap time of the session and take him into P3 for the Russian GP.
George Russell – Williams Racing Team
P3 is an incredible result, and the team did an amazing job once again. We’re riding a wave at the moment, and it feels pretty great! It’s high risk and high reward in situations like these but I knew it would be slicks for the end of the session.
I managed to get the tyres in a good window and was building up to the limit to give it everything I had on the last lap.
Many people have said in the past that third is the best place to start in Sochi. I won’t be doing anything crazy but if there’s an opportunity there tomorrow, I’ll go for it. It’s going to be a very tricky race, but I’ll be defending hard and picking my battles.
We’ve got to look forward but also be realistic as we’ve got some very fast cars behind us. It’s not going to be easy, but I will be doing my best.
The Russian GP will get underway at 1pm BST on Sunday September 26.