Following an extraordinary qualifying session which left Mercedes sitting second and third on the grid, George Russell is adamant that he will be aiming for victory at the 2023 Australian GP.
The Silver Arrows have complained vehemently about the car since the opening F1 race of 2023, going to so far as to indicate that they will completely change their design concept.
If Mercedes are to win the 2023 Australian GP, they will have to contend with Max Verstappen in the Red Bull, who has been the class of the field so far this season.
“We got to go for it, we got to go for a win,” Russell told the press after qualifying. “Max [Verstappen in the Red Bull] is going to be extremely fast. There’s no hiding that.
“I think it’s difficult to overtake around this circuit. So the start, Lap 1, is going to be vital. But the Red Bull has extraordinary top speed.
“So it’s gonna be very difficult to fight with with Max. But let’s see. Let’s see how we get on. We got to do our own race. If the opportunity is there, we will go for it.”
Hamilton more pessimistic
Despite the euphoria of qualification and Russell’s optimism for the fight. Lewis Hamilton highlighted a number of variables which need to go in Mercedes’ favour in order to bag a win.
“I think it’s difficult to say,” Hamilton said. “I haven’t even done a long run. So tomorrow going into the race will be the first time I do so. And I’ve not seen where we tally up compared to them [Red Bull].
“But I mean, I think we have to expect they’re going to be quarter of a second, half a second, at least quicker than us.
“But maybe in the tow, maybe we can we can just about hold on, maybe the fact that there’s two of us and only one Red Bull, maybe with strategy, maybe we can we can apply some pressure to them. So we’ll see.”