Vettel likes racing against ‘always fair’ Russell

Date published: October 26 2021 - Michelle Foster

Sebastian Vettel locks up as he races against George Russell. Austin October 2021

Racing against George Russell at the United States Grand Prix, Sebastian Vettel says he enjoys their battles as the Williams driver is “always fair”.

Vettel and Russell fought at the start of the Circuit of The Americas race as both drivers lined up at the back of the grid after incurring engine change penalties.

Starting the race from 20th on the grid with Vettel P18, Russell made the better start as he shot up six places.

Vettel tried to find a way past the Williams but Russell’s defending proved to be good, at least at that moment of the race.

Vettel later passed him around the outside at the Turn 16-18 complex.

“I like racing George,” the Aston Martin driver said, quoted by GPFans.

“It is not the first time this year [we have battled] but he seems to be aware of where his car is.

“He is always fair and obviously sometimes he has the upper hand, sometimes I have the upper hand. I enjoyed that.”

Vettel raced his way to 10th place on the day, the German back in the points for the first time since the Belgian Grand Prix.

He applauded Aston Martin’s strategy, the team opting for a long first stint.

“We obviously stayed out a lot longer in the first stint and wanted to have the tyre advantage at the end and it seemed to work,” he said.

“Maybe a couple of laps more we could have attacked Yuki [Tsunoda] but it was a good recovery from where we started.

“We did a little bit more race prep on Friday but I don’t think that made a difference. It was a tough race for everyone managing tyres and I think that helped us a little bit.”

Russell was not able to score, the 2022 Mercedes driver finishing down in 14th place.

 

“It was never easy,” Russell told the Formula 1 website. “To be honest, we didn’t really have the pace this weekend, for whatever reason. Lots to look into.

“I made a good start, P20 up to P14 or something, struggling to keep Fernando and Sebastian behind me, but that was how it was.

“Then a pretty long, lonely race from then on in. A tricky weekend and on to the next.”