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Lewis Hamilton says the arrival of his new Mercedes staff mate for the 2022 Components 1 season has been dealt with seamlessly.
George Russell, who substituted for Hamilton on the Sakhir Grand Prix in 2020, has changed Valtteri Bottas within the staff’s line-up for the brand new season.
It’s the first change within the staff’s common driver line-up since Bottas took the place of Nico Rosberg on the finish of 2016. Hamilton’s relationship with Rosberg was fractious at instances, however he loved a extra harmonious 5 years alongside Bottas.
After six days of testing alongside Russell, Hamilton says the pair are off to a great begin collectively.
“He’s gelled very simply into the staff,” stated Hamilton. “It has been fairly much like [when] we labored collectively beforehand inside within the engineering room for, I feel, loads of races up to now the place he simply sat behind me and I watched all the pieces I did and the identical with Valtteri.
“He knew everybody so it’s been seamless. We’re working collectively, speaking lots when it comes to set-up course, so it’s working rather well.”
Russell has been a part of Mercedes’ younger driver programme since 2017. That gave him a chance to work carefully with Hamilton, till he made his personal F1 debut with Williams in 2019.
“I do not know when the primary time we began working collectively was,” stated Hamilton, “I simply keep in mind him being within the engineers room with us and feeling very a lot part of the staff and considered one of my staff mates earlier than this 12 months. So it’s been fairly straightforward.”
In his single earlier begin for Mercedes, Russell impressed by nearly out-qualifying Bottas, passing him at first and main a lot of the race earlier than a pit cease drawback and puncture price him a shot at victory. Hamilton had excessive reward for his one-time substitute’s capacity.
“I feel George is of course extremely proficient, very, very focussed,” he stated. “Up to now, it appears, very real and he’s simply focussed on being the very best staff participant he will be. That’s so removed from what I see.
“As I say it’s nice for everybody within the staff, it appears very seamless and everybody’s simply working, holding their heads down and dealing collectively as a staff and as a unit.”
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