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George Russell

Qatar GP concerns: Russell close to 'giving up'

The Mercedes driver joins others in voicing his opinion on the gruelling conditions during the Qatar Grand Prix.

Russell Qatar
To news overview © XPBimages

George Russell believes the hot conditions at the Qatar Grand Prix were "borderline too much" after he revealed that he nearly fainted 12 laps into the race.

The Mercedes driver started from second on the grid but collided with his teammate Lewis Hamilton at the first corner.

He fought back up through the field in the opening stint, before getting past Fernando Alonso and Charles Leclerc for fourth.

While the air temperature reached a maximum of 33°c, drivers complained of extreme heat in their cockpits due to the humidity.

This was exacerbated by fatigue brought on by the mandated short stint lengths introduced specifically for this event, which meant they were effectively doing qualifying laps throughout the 57-lap race.

Russell: Any hotter and I would've retired

"It was beyond the limit I think for what was acceptable for driving," Russell told media, including RacingNews365.

"If over 50 per cent of the grid was saying they were sick, couldn't drive, close to passing out... you don't want to be passing out when you're driving 200mph down a straight.

"That's how I felt at times. Any hotter and I think I would've retired because my body was going to give up."

F1 2023 Qatar Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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