Russell says at Suzuka Mercedes’ “weakness has truly been exposed”

© Sebastian Kawka for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix ltd.

After qualifying in P8 for the Japanese Grand Prix, George Russell says Mercedes is “losing a huge amount of lap time down the straights”.

The Japanese Grand Prix Qualifying turned out to be a pretty underwhelming session for Mercedes. George Russell, who qualified in P8 says the main issue was the W13’s performance on the straights.

“The car was feeling okay in all honesty,” the Briton said.

“Not perfect but not as far off as the lap time showed. It was a feeling within. We are losing a huge amount of lap time down the straights compared to our rivals.

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“That’s kind of been the case all season but I think this is the first circuit that has long straight which you also have high downforce.

“Normally when you look at the circuits with the long straights – Spa, Monza, even Silverstone – where you’re running low downforce and the high downforce circuits – Monaco, Budapest, Zandvoort, Singapore – they have short straights.

“You don’t really see that deficit in the straight-line speed but here that weakness has truly been exposed,” Russell concluded.

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