George Russell is “100% a world champion in the making” as he seeks to achieve the rare feat of beating Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton in the Formula 1 Drivers’ Championship at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

George Russell has been branded a ‘world champion in the making’ as he seeks to seal the rare feat of beating team-mate Lewis Hamilton in the Drivers’ Championship.

Russell enters the Abu Dhabi final 25 points ahead of fellow Mercedes driver Hamilton, with 26 points up for grabs for a win and fastest lap.


Russell starts a place behind Hamilton on the Abu Dhabi grid

So far it has Mercedes only win of the season


So far it has Mercedes only win of the season

Should Russell beat his fellow Briton in the standings, it would only be the third season in which Hamilton has finished lower than a team-mate in his trophy-laden 16-year career.

Russell would also do so in his first season with Mercedes, in a team where Hamilton dominated the sport, winning six of his seven world titles, becoming the most successful Formula 1 driver of all time.

The 24-year-old would also clinch the feat on a huge peak, having won last time out in Brazil for his first-ever F1 win, capping off a masterful weekend where he was untouchable.

One of six men to attempt the near impossible task of overthrowing Hamilton as a teammate, Heikki Kovalainen, was as impressed as anyone with Russell, as he told talkSPORT.

The former McLaren and Renault driver said: “I was very impressed, I think he came into Mercedes very strong and had a very good start to the season.

“Maybe Lewis’ start to the season was worse than you would expect from him, I think he was experimenting with trying a lot of different things on his car, trying to sort out the problems of bounce.

Mercedes' difficult season was cut short by Hamilton's maiden win


Mercedes’ difficult season was cut short by Hamilton’s maiden win

Kovalainen is one of the few to undertake the feat of partnering with Hamilton


Kovalainen is one of the few to undertake the feat of partnering with Hamilton

“I think you can’t really get a true picture of Lewis’ pace and Russell’s pace at the start of the season and obviously Lewis has gotten strong now because they’ve been able to sort out the car a bit and the car is getting better. we see normal performances from Lewis.

“But I’ve been very impressed with what Russell has done, I think he’s done a really good job this year and not just being fast and consistent on the track, but his body language out of the car has helped. very confident.

“He’s very active and he gives credit to other drivers, he gives credit to Lewis when it’s due, but he knows very well where he is himself, and he also knows how good he is. “

“I saw in his body language that he has the real confidence in himself, that he believes in his own skills.

“I was very impressed and I’m 100 per cent sure he’s a manufacturing world champion.”


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