George Russell calls for ‘rethink’ as F1 faces Spa tyre conundrum

Sam Cooper
George Russell with his hood up. Spa, Belgium. July 2023.

George Russell with his hood up. Spa, Belgium. July 2023.

George Russell believes the number of intermediate tyres available to each team could have a big impact on the Belgian Grand Prix.

It was two years ago where wet weather at the Spa circuit produced an extraordinary result of Russell qualifying P2 in an otherwise underperforming Williams car and would go on to have a huge impact with Sunday’s race a washout.

A qualifying result of P2 was turned into a race podium and contributed to almost 40% of Williams’ points that year.

Two years on, Russell has switched teams but the current forecast suggests we could be in for a similar qualifying session during the busy sprint weekend.

Where wet weather, especially at a track like Spa, brings safety concerns, it can also be the great equaliser in performance and Russell is optimistic he can capitalise on that.

“I think that day [with] Williams, we just nailed everything down to the last millimetre,” Russell said when asked by

“But I think these conditions are where a lot of mistakes can happen but [also] where a lot of opportunity arises. It doesn’t take a lot to swing your lap. One small mistake can lose a second and a half.” recommends

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It is not just Friday that is predicted to be wet with the rain forecast to continue into Saturday before drying up for the Sunday race. With only six sets of intermediate tyres available to each driver, Russell believes teams may be forced to be strategic with their allocation.

“It’s going to be challenging this weekend, I think only six sets of intermediate tyres [Editor’s note – drivers will have a maximum of five tyres during a sprint weekend]. If it’s wet throughout the whole weekend, you might see some teams be very strategic with how they use the tyres whether they are able to run in the sprint qualifying.

“It needs potentially a bit of a rethink because Austria was almost a wash out as well and we’re potentially going to be running out of tyres.”

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