Martin Brundle believes George Russell
already has all it takes to "pick up the mantle at Mercedes
" once Lewis Hamilton leaves the team.
Shocking news hit the World of F1
yesterday as Lewis Hamilton's
departure from Mercedes at the end of the season 2024 was announced. The seven-time World Champion will be joining Ferrari from the 2025 season onwards
This, however, leaves everyone with many unanswered questions. One of them is - What happens with Mercedes now that one of the key team members is leaving?
Martin Brundle believes the team has a driver who is ready to take on Hamilton's role and lead the team to success. As reported by Sky Sports
, he said:
"George is ready to pick up the mantle at Mercedes, there is no doubt about it all. He's measured himself against, statistically and arguably, the greatest Formula 1 driver of all time...and looks incredibly strong, very equal."
As a matter of fact, the 25-year-old driver beat the seven-time World Champion in his first season with Silver Arrows in 2022. That is something Valtteri Bottas
wasn't able to do in five years.
So Russell proved he deserved his seat during the first season. Even though he lacked a bit of race pace on his more experienced teammate in 2023, he was able to match Hamilton in qualifications where the two drivers were basically level on pace
Brundle stated it isn't even clear to him whether Hamilton could beat Russell in Mercedes if the team had a Championship-contending car all of a sudden in 2024.
"If Mercedes had a championship-winning car this year, who would win? George or Lewis? I think it would be close. That's the level he is at now."
Mercedes's team principal, Toto Wolff
, called the 25-year-old driver the "future" of Mercedes last year. Can you imagine Russell as the leader of Silver Arrows?