George Russell reaffirmed his current loyalty towards Mercedes, but he would consider an offer from Red Bull if it came – or anyone else for that matter.
The Briton is currently in the third and final season of his three-year deal at Williams, without doubt his strongest campaign so far in Formula 1.
It is no surprise then that he is widely expected to replace Valtteri Bottas at Mercedes for 2022, though the German team are not going to make any announcement imminently.
Recently Helmut Marko, the head of Red Bull’s driver programme, confirmed that they would seriously consider moving for Russell if Mercedes made the surprise option not to promote him for 2022, and with Russell stating that he never closes the door on any relationship, a move to Red Bull can not be ruled out in future.
“I am a Mercedes driver and I am currently loyal to Mercedes,” Russell told the F1 Nation podcast.
“They have stood by my side since day one and given me all of my opportunities. I trust that they have my best interests at heart.
“But I always like to keep a relationship open with everyone really. I never like to close any doors and if somebody asked for a conversation then I would never say no.
“You never know what happens in the future and things change pretty drastically.
“You only have to look at Stefano [Domenicali]. He was team principal of Ferrari and now he is the CEO of Formula 1. I guess maybe 10 years ago, you might not have predicted that.”
For Russell though his main focus is on making sure that he remains on top form, stressing how easy it is to drop off the Formula 1 grid with only 20 seats available.
“Well you can never let up. This is the unique thing about Formula 1 in that there’s only 20 race seats in the world,” he explained.
“And if you start to lose form and the results aren’t coming in and you somehow lose your seat, then there are no guarantees that you will get it back.
“In football, if you lose your form, you might be on the bench for a couple of weeks but then you can prove yourself in training. Or if it’s tennis and you lose your form then you may drop down the world rankings, but you can work yourself up back into the top 10 or world number one.
“In Formula 1, if you’re 25th in the world, you don’t have a job.”