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Russell on Mercedes' strategy: I look like a genius, but I was lucky

George Russell benefitted from a well-timed strategy call in the Miami Grand Prix, which helped him to end the race in P5 after starting from 12th on the grid.

George Russell admits that he got lucky with a strategy call in the Miami Grand Prix that led to his fifth-place finish. The Briton had a difficult qualifying session on Saturday, and as a result lined up in P12 on the grid. As such, the decision was made to start the race on Hard tyres and opt for a long first stint. Russell was heard suggesting to his Mercedes crew that they stay out even longer in case a Safety Car was called, and fate played into his hands when this happened following a collision between Lando Norris and Pierre Gasly on Lap 41 of 57. This gave Russell the opportunity to pit for Medium tyres, and he was then able to overtake teammate Lewis Hamilton to claim a P5 result.

Russell glad of "fortunate" stategy call

Russell concedes that his earlier strategy call in regards to the Safety Car was simply coincidental. "I think that was a little bit fortunate," the Briton told media, including RacingNews365.com . "You sound like a bit of a genius when things like that happen, but that's the case when you're on an offset strategy. "We had P7 covered; there was no point to pit, you may as well just stay out there and hope for something like that to happen. "And we were a bit lucky today."

Mercedes still need to understand change in pace

The Miami Grand Prix weekend proved to be one of mixed fortunes for Mercedes; the W13 appeared to show better pace during Friday's practice sessions, but could not match this on Saturday, hence Russell's struggles in qualifying. Russell feels that there was an improvement again on Sunday, but that the team still have work to do in figuring out this lack of consistency. "We still didn't show the pace that we showed on Friday," he explained. "We showed much more pace than we showed yesterday, but still a long way from where we were on Friday, and we need to understand why that is." Russell has not yet finished lower than fifth in any race of the 2022 F1 season, and currently sits fourth in the World Championship standings.

RESULTS 2024 F1 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix - Qualifying