Formula 1
Formula 1
R
Emilia Romagna GP
18 Apr
Race in
46 days
09 May
Next event in
64 days
23 May
Race in
81 days
R
Azerbaijan GP
06 Jun
Race in
95 days
13 Jun
Race in
103 days
27 Jun
Race in
116 days
04 Jul
Next event in
120 days
18 Jul
Race in
137 days
R
Hungarian GP
01 Aug
Race in
151 days
29 Aug
Race in
179 days
05 Sep
Race in
186 days
12 Sep
Race in
193 days
26 Sep
Race in
207 days
R
Singapore GP
03 Oct
Next event in
211 days
10 Oct
Race in
221 days
R
United States GP
24 Oct
Race in
236 days
31 Oct
Race in
243 days
R
Australian GP
21 Nov
Race in
263 days
R
Saudi Arabia GP
05 Dec
Race in
278 days
R
Abu Dhabi GP
12 Dec
Race in
284 days

Russell's speed with Mercedes shows what F1 is missing - Sainz

George Russell’s impressive performance for Mercedes at the Sakhir Grand Prix shows what Formula 1 is missing by there not being a level playing field between teams, says Carlos Sainz.

Russell's speed with Mercedes shows what F1 is missing - Sainz

With Russell having qualified on the front row in Bahrain after a last-minute call up by Mercedes to replace Lewis Hamilton, the young Briton looks on course to take the first points and potentially the first podium of his career.

And while many of his rivals say they are not surprised that Russell has done so well straight out of the box, Sainz believes that the situation proves that the spread of form between cars is too big to allow driving talent to shine through.

He thinks there is something wrong in the way that Russell can only really show how good he is by stepping in to a car like the Mercedes that allows him to prove his skills.

“It just demonstrates what Formula 1 is missing out from, by having cars that are two seconds apart when pretty much the whole grid could be within three tenths of a second because of the talent there is on the grid,” explains Sainz.

“It's a shame that a guy that is fighting for P15 every weekend, suddenly when you put him in a race winning car, he's 20 thousandths off pole.

“If anything for me, this demonstrates what F1 is missing out from, creating a much more incredible show if you could level the playing field a bit more and allow the driver to make more of a difference.

“At the moment, when you are one second off the pace or two seconds off the pace you cannot really see the last two tenths from a driver that makes a difference.”

Read Also:

Sainz’s McLaren teammate Lando Norris thinks the quality of talent on the F1 grid means that a lot of drivers would be doing what Russell had done this weekend – but says there remain things that Hamilton brings to Mercedes that few could match.

“We can all drive cars extremely quickly, and maybe it's just a car that suits George and probably suits a lot of other drivers as well,” he said.

“If you want to win a championship, you need to be in a Mercedes. So I think a lot of drivers could do something kind of similar and, at some races, bring the fight to Valtteri or bring a fight to Lewis.

“But there's a lot of traits which Lewis has, like his consistency to be able to be on pole, the majority of the weekends and have flawless races without mistakes. I think those are his impressive traits.

“I think if we go to Abu Dhabi maybe you'll see a slightly different story. I think this is a track with four corners. If there's a track where maybe it's a bit easier for a driver to jump into a new car and do something special, it is probably here.

“So it'll be interesting to see if George was in the Mercedes next weekend in Abu Dhabi, whether it'll be the same story and whether he'd be even quicker, or whether he just struggles that little bit more because he doesn't know the Mercedes like the back of his hand like Valtteri would.”

shares
comments

Related video

Gasly frustrated after kerb strike wrecks qualifying hopes

Previous article

Gasly frustrated after kerb strike wrecks qualifying hopes

Next article

Ricciardo: Patience will be key to seizing Sakhir "opportunity"

Ricciardo: Patience will be key to seizing Sakhir "opportunity"
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Event Sakhir GP
Drivers George Russell
Teams Mercedes
Author Jonathan Noble
Can Mercedes' W12 retain the team's crown? Prime

Can Mercedes' W12 retain the team's crown?

Replacing Formula 1's fastest car was never going to be an easy feat for Mercedes. Amid the technical rule tweaks to peg back the W12 and its 2021 rivals, the new Mercedes challenger will remain the target to beat

The pointed note that starts Ferrari's Leclerc vs Sainz era Prime

The pointed note that starts Ferrari's Leclerc vs Sainz era

Ferrari is starting its post-Sebastian Vettel age by welcoming Carlos Sainz in alongside Charles Leclerc. But while Sainz has a tough challenge to match his new teammate, Ferrari is also sending a message that previous intra-team spats must end

The mantra Ocon must follow to challenge Alonso at Alpine Prime

The mantra Ocon must follow to challenge Alonso at Alpine

OPINION: It's been an uneasy ride for Esteban Ocon since his F1 comeback - and fresh challenges lie in wait as he's joined by double world champion Fernando Alonso in the newly rebranded Alpine team. STUART CODLING sets out a roadmap to success…

Why Haas is willing to sacrifice its 2021 F1 season Prime

Why Haas is willing to sacrifice its 2021 F1 season

Every Formula 1 team is facing the same difficult decision this season: how do you split precious aero development time between the current car and the all-new 2022 project?

The big questions of F1 2021 - Karun Chandhok Prime

The big questions of F1 2021 - Karun Chandhok

After an unprecedented season last year, there are plenty of questions and storylines for the upcoming Formula 1 campaign. Sky Sports F1 pundit Karun Chandhok gives his verdict.

Formula 1
Mar 1, 2021
How McLaren F1’s new investors have already made an impact Prime

How McLaren F1’s new investors have already made an impact

The deal McLaren concluded with MSP Sports Capital last year which will help the cash-strapped Formula 1 team pay for much-needed infrastructure upgrades, also points toward the future for F1 itself, says GP Racing's Stuart Codling.

Formula 1
Feb 27, 2021
Why Verstappen isn't interested in the hype game Prime

Why Verstappen isn't interested in the hype game

In a pre-season where Red Bull has been unusually quiet, Max Verstappen has also been guarded about the team's fortunes in 2021. Even after trying the RB16B for the first time at Silverstone, the Dutchman was careful to manage expectations

Formula 1
Feb 26, 2021
The pros and cons of F1's 2021 rule changes Prime

The pros and cons of F1's 2021 rule changes

In the strategy for grand prix racing's future, 2021 represents a significant step towards the goal of closer racing and a more level playing field. That's the theory behind the latest raft of changes, but will they have the desired effect?

Formula 1
Feb 24, 2021