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How Russell staked his claim for Hamilton's crown
When Lewis Hamilton eventually decides to hang up his helmet, Mercedes has a problem: how to replace the greatest driver of a generation? George Russell is one who might inherit that mantle - but he'll still have to fight for it, says Luke Smith.
Slumped disconsolately against a grassy bank at Imola while marshals shepherded his damaged Williams off the track, George Russell could not believe what he had just done. Having accumulated a near-spotless record through his Formula 1 career to date, he'd just committed one of the biggest don'ts in racing: shunting behind the Safety Car.
Running 10th and eyeing the prospect of scoring his first F1 point, Russell pushed too hard while trying to get warmth into his tyres before the restart, causing his Williams FW43 to spear left into the wall at the entry to Acque Minerali.
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