“It is important respect is always there”– Lewis Hamilton instructs George Russell what he needs to do if he joins Mercedes in 2022.
Lewis Hamilton has almost accepted that Valtteri Bottas, who he thinks has been his best teammate ever so far, would be leaving Mercedes at the end of this year.
And soon, Bottas would be replaced by George Russell, who is having an incredible season with Williams in 2021. So, Hamilton has publicly instructed Russell to respect the harmony founded in Mercedes to establish an effective partnership.
“I don’t feel I have anything to prove. I have raced against some incredible drivers as teammates, including Fernando Alonso in my rookie year,” said Hamilton.
“There will be things we learn from one another and it is important respect is always there. Communication is at the core of that. George being British will help.”
The words allegedly refer to the hostile partnership between Hamilton and Nico Rosberg, and after 2016, Toto Wolff pledged to never have two alpha drivers in the same cage- Mercedes.
“If it does turn out that I have got a new team-mate, I am in a different place in my life,” added Hamilton, who has been paired with Bottas since Rosberg’s retirement in 2016. “We are much better prepared than we were in previous years, so it doesn’t really worry me.
Relationship with George Russell will be good
Despite the initial lobbying for Bottas, Hamilton has accepted the fate, but he also opines that his relationship with his compatriot as a teammate would be good, as the 23-year-old driver has worked with the team on the past occasions.
“When you start with someone new, it takes time for them to gel, but George has been on the circuit for us; he has raced for the team and been in the background, too.
“Our relationship will be good. He is clearly an incredibly talented driver, and I would say the only highlight from last week was his amazing qualifying lap. He is humble, and I am excited to see the youngsters coming through.
“I don’t want to lose to them, but I want to see the progression of the sport because I am a fan. These guys are fierce and I see a lot of myself in the younger generation.”