It’s been a long time coming, but a Williams Racing car has made it through to the second part of qualifying – or Q2 – for the first time since the Brazilian Grand Prix of 2018, some 24 races ago.
George Russell posted the 12th quickest time in #Q1 ensuring he was one of the 15 fastest drivers to progress to Q2, with five – stablemate Nicholas Latifi included – being eliminated.
Not content with this, George Russell then proceeded to miss out on a top ten time, and progression into the final part of qualifying by a whisker, eventually securing 11th place on Sunday’s grid, directly behind Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel, and ahead of Ferrari’s second driver Charles Leclerc who fell foul of the stewards after he was deemed to have blocked Daniil Kvyat from bettering his own time.
George’s ability to mix it with the cars around him is the proof we were all hoping for that Williams have halted the seemingly never-ending slide Towards the foot of the table that began in 2018, and that culminated in p19 and p20 throughout last season.
That he was able to do it in difficult wet conditions is further testament to George’s ability that should see him as a championship contender in years to come. It positions George perfectly in his attempts to secure a top ten finish come Sunday, and with it his first points in F1.
Up at the front, an incredible performance by World Champion Lewis Hamilton to qualify on pole 1.2 seconds ahead of second place Max Verstappen who spun on his final quick lap. McLaren’s Carlos Sainz with championship leader Valtteri Bottas in fourth.
George’s starting position ensures that he will start Sunday’s Steiermark Grand Prix in the thick of F1’s midfield, ahead of a Ferrari, both Racing Point cars, and all four Haas and Alfa Romeos – the most likely competition for Williams in 2020.
It also makes it 23-0 in qualifying for George Russell against his team-mates since beginning of his Formula 1 career last year.