George Russell delivers Red Bull prediction in optimistic Mercedes message

Sam Cooper
Max Verstappen and George Russell

George Russells believes Red Bull will have the advantage going into 2024.

George Russell has “no doubt” Red Bull will start 2024 on top having been so dominant in the previous two seasons.

Despite initial suggestions that Ferrari were on an even keel, Red Bull eventually emerged as the prevailing force following the 2022 regulation changes.

2023 was the most one-sided season in the history of F1 and Mercedes driver Russell has admitted the Milton Keynes outfit will likely start on top again in 2024.

George Russell optimistic about Mercedes’ 2024 chances

Since moving to Mercedes, Russell has not had the kind of performance he may have expected with the Silver Arrows falling away from title contention at the same time.

That looks unlikely to change anytime soon with Red Bull now the strongest team on the grid but Russell is optimistic “things can change.”

“I certainly think we’re in a better place now than we were 12 months ago,” he told the Telegraph.

“We’ve been working towards our new car concept for a number of months. We’ve cross-checked everything 1,000 times, and we’re all very confident.

“There’s no doubt Red Bull will start the season on top. But it is a long season. It starts earlier than ever and finishes later than ever. Things can change.

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“For my part, I’m excited. I feel good within myself. And next year is a clean slate for everybody.

“I hope for a season where I can perform and get the results as I did in 2022, or at least maximise results as I did in 2022. My confidence hasn’t been dented whatsoever.”

Having beaten Lewis Hamilton in 2022, Russell fell short of the seven-time World Champion last season – but is not daunted by the task of racing what he described as the best driver of all-time.

“I’ve been on Lewis’s level, on average, throughout this year,” he notes. “And I’m not satisfied with just being on his level. I want to be ahead of him. But I’ve also got to be realistic.

“I’m going up against the greatest driver of all time. He’s definitely not a bad benchmark. And, you know, I think quali statistics, if you include sprint races, we’re exactly the same. And pace-wise, we’re generally the same as well.

“So there are positives. And to be honest I’d prefer to be sat here without the results, but with the pace. Rather than saying ‘Oh, we lucked into a result here or we lucked into a result there’ when actually I was a tenth or two off the pace.”

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