George Russell elated at beating Max Verstappen to unprecedented 2024 Canadian GP pole

Russell and Verstappen set the exact same time, but Russell got pole because he did it first

-

George Russell is on pole for the first time in 574 days after beating Max Verstappen to the punch at the 2024 Canadian Grand Prix, leaving himself and his Mercedes team in a “buzz” as they plan to gun straight for their first win since 2022 on Sunday, June 9.

It was unprecedented for the Silver Arrows, who have simply not had the speed of Red Bull, Ferrari, McLaren and even Aston Martin, at times, throughout the opening stages of this Formula 1 season before the 26-year-old pulled the rabbit out of the hat in Montreal.

The one-time race winner set a 1:12.000, which was the same time as Verstappen, but took pole by setting it first for just the third pole position of his career and the team’s fourth since the start of the 2022 season.

“Yeah, I’m on such a such a buzz,” Russell said, when asked how he’s feeling. “It’s been a while since we’ve experienced this feeling.

“So much hard work going on behind the scenes back in Brackley and Brixworth and it’s been a little while to be able to sort of get back in the fight and we’ve almost felt like all of that hard work hasn’t been paying off.

“But I think these last few weeks and weekends have really shown that and, as I said, we’ve been so fast all weekend. Q3 was probably our worst session of qualifying and that bodes well for tomorrow.”

It’s unclear who is actually the quickest driver over the race distance as graining is expected to be a big factor on the newly-surfaced Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, exacerbated by the limited running caused by the torrential rain.

But that isn’t going to stop Russell from gunning for his second career win in F1 as he looks to ensure Verstappen loses his third race from his last four, in what could be a very wet Canadian GP.

Pole sitter George Russell of Mercedes, second placed Max Verstappen and third placed Lando Norris of McLaren after qualifying for the 2024 Canadian Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool
Pole sitter George Russell of Mercedes, second placed Max Verstappen and third placed Lando Norris of McLaren after qualifying for the 2024 Canadian Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Mercedes March of Progress continues

Mercedes brought a new front-wing to the Circuit de Monaco in May and it allowed them to come within a tenth of pole in Monte Carlo as they even beat Max Verstappen at that track too, showing a significant step forward.

However, despite their recent successes and the impression that the upgrades are beginning to reliable work for the team for the first time since 2021, Russell called for them to remain grounded and to avoid getting carried away in future weeks.

“A hundred percent,” Russell added to media after qualifying, when asked if he thinks Mercedes’ pace looks promising. “I think every lap we’ve done this weekend has been feeling good.

“We’ve always been at the upper end of timesheets, and we’re talking yesterday, why did we think we were so competitive in FP1 and FP2, and FP3 we really fast as well.

“So, we need to see in the next races if that continues, but last week in Monaco we were we were a tenth from the front row and here, on pole. These are the first two races we’ve had with the upgrade so time will tell. I won’t get carried away with myself, but it’s looking good so far.”

Brandon Sutton
Brandon Sutton
Brandon is an alumni of an NCTJ and BJTC Liverpool John Moores University course, and has been with Total-Motorsport.com for over a year now. He enjoys covering all forms of motorsport but particularly focuses on Formula 1, and Brandon loves to debate various topics of the sport and other interests, especially if that topic doesn't have an open/shut answer such as the GOAT debate.
- Advertisment -

LATEST NEWS

Should F1 adopt a football-style transfer window for drivers? Max Verstappen is the proof...

0
Formula 1 is unlike any other sport, and that's fine - the F1 purists thrive on its unique qualities....

What went wrong for Will Brown, Cam Waters in NASCAR Cup debuts

0
The NASCAR Cup Series had some Australian flavour Sunday when Supercars Championship stars Will Brown and Cameron Waters made...

What we learned from the 2024 Canadian GP

0
Max Verstappen returned to the top step of the podium after a terrible 2024 Monaco Grand Prix with an...
Norman Nato leads the field at the 2024 Shanghai E-Prix | Formula E

Formula E 2024-25 calendar announced for first Gen3 Evo season

0
Formula E have announced its provisional calendar for the 2024-25 season, which will be the first campaign for the...
Race winner Max Verstappen celebrates after the 2024 Canadian Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Max Verstappen aces huge Canadian GP test as Red Bull and Perez falter

0
While Lando Norris was frustrated with his team, George Russell committed a litany of errors and Lewis Hamilton lamented...

F1 risks repeating mistake with new 2026 regulations announcement

0
Formula 1 CEO Stefano Domenicali unveiled the sport's much-heralded new era of racing in 2026 promising "a new generation...

F1 Winners and Losers of the 2024 Canadian GP

0
The dust settled on a barnstorming 2024 Canadian Grand Prix weekend with Max Verstappen returning to the top step...
George Russell at 2024 Bahrain Grand Prix | Mercedes / Sebastian Kawka

George Russell mistakes exposed as Mercedes face major concern

0
George Russell may have started the Formula 1 2024 Canadian Grand Prix on pole position, yet there was a...
Race winner Max Verstappen and third placed George Russell of Mercedes during press conference after the 2024 Canadian Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

F1 Driver Ratings – Canadian GP 2024

0
The Formula 1 2024 Canadian Grand Prix promised to offer unpredictability with interchangeable weather and, for fans at the...
Race winner Max Verstappen celebrates after the 2024 Canadian Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Max Verstappen warns Red Bull teammate Perez: You can afford these one-offs… sometimes

0
Max Verstappen fired a warning shot to Sergio Perez just days after his teammate extended his Red Bull contract...
- Advertisment -