Russell dismisses praise from other drivers

23 November 2020 03:38:53 GMTPlus11

Williams driver George Russell has referred to praise from other drivers as "background noise" and believes he is yet to prove himself in Formula 1.

Whilst being grateful for the recognition from the likes of Sebastian Vettel, Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton, Russell recognises himself that it means nothing unless he can start to produce a high level of performance on the track for his team.

The 22-year-old, who is into his second season racing for Williams, is yet to pick up a single point but has long been regarded as a star of the future on the tarmac.

From a karting background, the Kings Lynn-born driver amassed more victories, laps led and podium finishes than any other driver in F2 when winning the championship two years ago and is currently into the second year of a multi-year deal with Williams.

On the praise he has received already, Russell, who finished 16th in the Turkish Grand Prix last week, said: "I obviously really appreciate these comments, without a shadow of a doubt, but I think it is almost background noise really because I know I have to continue to perform week-in, week-out.

"As fantastic as it is getting a pat on the back and praise from these guys, I have got to back that up with what I do on track. So I have always tried not letting comments like this get into my head or anything.

"I am doing this sport for myself, my family and the biggest amount of pressure I have is from myself, not from anybody else."

Russell is next in action at the Bahrain Grand Prix next weekend. World champion Lewis Hamilton is 1.36 to emerge victorious once again at the Sakhir circuit, while Mercedes team mate Valtteri Bottas is 4.00.

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