Russel isn’t lucky and Sergio is contender

2023 Australian Grand Prix, Thursday - Jiri Krenek

Some interesting issue out of the Australian GP paddock this week. First up is the battle of words between Lewis Hamilton and George Russell over the Saudi Arabian GP that saw Russell best his 7-time champion teammate, Hamilton.

Lewis had eluded the the fact that both drivers chose a different setup option and he implied that George was lucky with the one he chose.

George wasn’t about to take that lightly and said, no, it wasn’t luck, it was the right decision that he knew would be the correct setup because he worked with his side of the garage to make the needed changes.

Point is, Lewis’s words seemed to suggest that Russell just lucked out but George made it clear that luck isn’t involved in his race craft or program and that he worked with the team and made the right decision on setup. In fact, he said it was obvious the path he chose was the right one.

Now, that sends its own message about doing your homework and understanding the car and setup needed to achieve maximum results. I doubt that was lost on Lewis. It could be game on this weekend in Melbourne.

Meanwhile, Sergio Perez is making comments suggesting he’s a title contender, Red Bull is no longer a one-car team, meaning a Max Verstappen only team and Max hasn’t been to happy with the reliability issues he’s faced int eh first two race. It could be game on this weekend in Melbourne.

The FIA have widened the grid boxes to help avoid the incidents that Esteban Ocon had in Bahrain and Fernando Alonso then had in Saudi Arabia. There are mixed views on the efficacy of this solution.

Also saw rumors that Michael Masi would be at the race and that Lewis Hamilton won’t speak with him. If I were Lewis, I doubt I would either. However, the ultimate move would be to speak with him and find some forgiveness so both men could let it go and move on.

Not only has McLaren parted ways with James Key but they say part of their solution to this year’s miserable performance might be a kind go B-Spec car upgrade. I’d argue that could be what Mercedes is effectively doing but perhaps McLaren has a much more aggressive program in store.

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