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George Russell

Russell reveals funny Mercedes health and safety block

It seems George and Lewis were eager to give some staff a taste of what they have been feeling.

Russell Quali Monaco
Article
To news overview © XPBimages

George Russell has revealed how the health and safety officer at Mercedes has intervened to prevent staff from experiencing similar pain endured by the drivers in recent times.

Although the cars no longer suffer from the violent bouncing - or porpoising - that was so prevalent in the first year of the current aerodynamic era in 2022, the ground-effect forces still result in an uncomfortable ride at some of the bumpier circuits.

The Circuit Gilles Villeneuve has long been renowned for its bumps, however, a resurfacing over the winter should prevent any discomfort over the course of the current Canadian Grand Prix weekend.

Asked whether he preferred newly relaid tracks, or those with a degree of bumpy character, Russell gave a revealing answer.

"I do like the character to be honest," said Russell. "But when you spend an hour and 45 minutes in a car that is this close to the ground (holding his thumb and forefinger close together) and you hit every single bump, you feel it through your body."

With a smile, he added: "We have a rig at Mercedes that replicates the bumps that we go through. I think the health and safety officer has banned anyone from sitting inside the cockpit because the forces are so extreme.

"To give you some perspective, Lewis and I wanted to get our engineers and designers to sit in that car and say 'This is what we are feeling. How's your back after two hours?'

"As I said, you want to have the character, you want to have the bumps, but when the cars are running this close to the ground, and you're doing 330 [kph] down the straight, it's pretty brutal."

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RESULTS 2024 F1 Spanish Grand Prix - Qualifying