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George Russell

Russell hopeful of improvement after horror Friday

The Mercedes driver ended FP2 in 20th place after only using one set of tyres.

Russell Hungary
To news overview © XPBimages

Mercedes' George Russell says he is confident of a better day on Saturday, after having finished 20th and last in Friday's only dry running in FP2 for the Hungarian Grand Prix.

This weekend sees the introduction of Pirelli's 'Alternative Tyre Allocation' trial, with two fewer sets of tyres available to teams across the weekend than usual.

Like teammate Lewis Hamilton, Russell used a single set of tyres across second practice, failing to set a qualifying simulation time as he ended up dead last.

However, despite the disappointing appearance, the younger Briton was at pains to accentuate the positive.

"It didn't feel too bad, in all honesty," Russell told media, including RacingNews365.com.

"We only used one set of tyres throughout, and it was a set of used tyres as well, from FP1, so the lap times don't really give a true representation.

"I'm sure [Saturday] will be better, but we're still just focused on trying to improve.

"We always know that we tend to get better as the weekend progresses, which is the right way round for it to be."

Mercedes "struggling with grip"

Russell added, however, that there was still much for him and Mercedes to learn ahead of Saturday’s running.

"We’re struggling with a bit of overall grip," said the Briton.

"[We] don't have the tyres in the right window both at low fuel and high fuel, so just need to understand why that was – if we need to be taking a faster out-lap, slower out-lap for the qualifying stint; for the race run, if we need to be pushing harder and managing more.

"These are things that are a little bit difficult [to understand] when you're in the cockpit without looking at the data, to understand that the tyres are on the cooler side or the hotter side, and what exactly they need to go a bit faster.

"It wasn't our best day for sure. But it's not the first time I've said that on a Friday evening. Saturday, Sunday is often better."

F1 2023 Hungarian Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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