Nov.22 - Toto Wolff says it's "irrelevant" that George Russell beat seven time world champion Lewis Hamilton in their first year as Mercedes teammates in 2022.

Not only did Russell, 24, finished two places and 35 points ahead of Hamilton in the drivers' standings, the more than decade-younger Briton also secured Mercedes' sole race win this season.

"If I had been told that at the beginning of the season, I would have been incredibly proud and happy," said Russell. "After all, nine times out of ten, when you finish ahead of Lewis Hamilton, you probably become world champion."

Mercedes team boss may call off planned Japanese F1 GP absence

Lewis Hamilton, Toto Wolff and George Russell

However, team boss Wolff insists that Russell beating 37-year-old Hamilton this year is "irrelevant".

"They were not racing for a world championship," he added. "They haven't raced for victories apart from Brazil.

"I don't think for any of the team it matters whether they finish second, third, fourth or fifth."

Wolff also thinks 2021, and Hamilton's contentious last-lap title defeat to Max Verstappen, was much harder for the multiple champion to cope with.

"Last year was much worse," he said.

"Last year it was taken away from us. This year we lost it on merit. We just weren't good enough."

Wolff said the main problem was that Mercedes "got it wrong" with the brand new regulations, but he thinks a defeat was "absolutely necessary" to re-fire the team's motivation.

"I'm not sure at all whether we can bounce back to a position where we can compete for the championship next year," he said. "You need to acknowledge that the competition is strong but we will do everything in our power to set our objectives high and try to reach them."


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51 F1 Fan comments on “Wolff says it's irrelevant that Russell beat Hamilton this F1 season

  1. Nobodysperfect

    Yeah right! Put up the brave face Toto! I think Hamilton will have some heavy nightmares this winter break and wakes up sweating when he realizes it's his first F1 season of 16! Without a single win or pole position! In fact he never finished the season lower than 5th at McLaren.

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  2. shroppyfly

    Sounds like he still cant get over 21, "irrelevant". Not to Russell it wasn't...., beat your team mate No 1 rule of f1, three months off, Louise will probably spend 95% of it wrestling with his inner self should I, shouldn't I .

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  3. Susan

    Right, Toto. If LH is still going on about last year’s race, losing to Russell this year has to be a real thorn in his ego.
    What “greatest of all time” driver would think his number 2 guy isn’t relevant.

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      • Susan

        I know everyone sings Alonso’s praises but IMO,he is a good mid field driver for his age. For all is self praises, he better perform at Aston Martin.

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    • Donalf

      Susan, if you remember when sir Lulu was ill, young GR took the wheel in sir Lulu's car and probably could have won n the race if it wasn't fof mysterious happens,, bad pit stops, punctures "if I remember right" anyway, you name it it it happened & I think he came in at eighth place,, do you see what I'm getting at,, Abu Dhabi,, 5-5 second pitstop, 5 second penalty for unsafe release, even I saw a car coming down the pit lane Why? did they let him out in front of an oncoming car, its mercedes not Hass beggers belief why they treat GR in that way,, as for "sir Lulu" wasn't that the same overtake move on CS as he tried on MV the week before, I'm sure he still believes, because he is sevon times WDC & because he is sir Lulu that, no matter what he is entitled to right of way & everybody else should move over and allow him a clear drive to the front,, WOW! not anymore sir Lulu you have to work for your wins in the future,, HA!

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      • Susan

        I do remember and at the time I thought something was suspicious. Mercedes pit generally were on their game, not this time. Lew was not going to accept GR stealing his thunder or even the Mercedes’ crew. Nothing was said, no questions asked. Lew is a legend ( in his own mind). Not ready to accept what’s coming. Bottas comes to mind on several occasions as well.

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  4. shroppyfly

    Slightly before Gaga entered his blessed period when he discovered a superpower , The power to blatantly lie to the Stewards and get himself disqualified from the 2009 Australian gp. 2007 season --109/109 yeah really beaten...I mean its not 35 points beaten by your team mate ill admit

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    • Susan

      George should think he’s relevant. He has outperformed the GOAT. Maybe LH should have devoted more time on this season and a little less on last year. Was not very impressive even when the porpoising was a problem, George seemed to soldier on, even able to get out of his car without all the dramatic moments. Maybe this is a young man’s sport.

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      • ReallyOldRacer

        Susan, I mostly agree with your posts, probably because you drive the Porsche and relegate Mr. Susan to the Volvo. However, the last sentence in this one irritates me. First, 'young' is a matter of perspective and, second, 'man's sport' dismisses half the population. So there. :)

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  5. Susan

    Hate has nothing to do with this. If you watched that race, Russell’s performance was exceptional. Mercedes tragedy and pit crew let him down. What was interesting, when Lewis was racing, there never seemed to show these shortcomings. This is not hate, this is just interesting.

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    • Donalf

      Not a problem Susan as shropp would say "A6award is from another planet,, I would say that also,, he's got HATE on his mind, mayby he should go and see a shrink but even they would struggle,.,. Ha!!

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      • CanadianEh

        The Shrink already told F6 that as a result of his multiple and severe concussions, should he continue with the vitriol and hatred, it may cause his aneurism to burst. Hey, it's all on him to come into the Light.

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  6. shroppyfly

    Apparently Lucy applied to be on "Im a celebrity get me out of here" her application was rejected on the basis of (.... ... .. ....... . .......... ) you fill in the blanks lol

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  7. TruePost

    I agree with Wolff, it is irrelevant that Russel beat Lewis on all fronts. What is relevant is that Lewis' F1 career is on the downswing and Russel's on the upswing.

    It happens sometimes that a driver cannot recover from some racing incident. For Lewis it was getting beat on the last lap of the last race in 2021. For Seb it was his crazy scene in Montreal a couple of years ago.

    For all of them, their day of reckoning is just around the corner. For some it's already happened and they can't see it.

    And now, we have big gozillionaire hero Lewis threatening to call in sick because his Merc is so bad. What a childish reaction.

    I miss the days when drivers got together, drove their race, and got over whatever unlucky happening within a couple of hours at the most.

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  8. shroppyfly

    I miss the days when drivers got together, drove their race, and got over whatever unlucky happening within a couple of hours at the most.

    Kimi, mwahhhh, I crashed, I'm off to the pub whose coming? The like of Kimi will never be seen again Unfortunately...!

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  9. Susan

    Lewis acts like a spoiled child who doesn’t get his own way. As long as he’s winning and gets all the praises and accolades, he’s demure, he’s overly thoughtful. The minute he is not winning, stomps his feet, complains and storms off in his G6. Hopefully, when he retires, the world will see the real Lewis/Louise.

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    • Manxman

      Oh please, the #1 drivers on the top teams are all wired this way and can behave like the world revolves around only them. Fair play I guess and the evidence suggests it’s part of what makes them sit at or near the pinnacle of the sport. Singling only LH out is letting one’s inner fan overrule common sense.

      And the constant demeaning references to their gender, sexual orientation,etc are juvenile tiresome, and not particularly clever.

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      • Jenson's button

        No one on here made Lewis have to hide his orientation. Some people are just pointing out the rather obvious. Maybe it's not nice and is juvenile, but maybe he deserves it.

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        • shroppyfly

          Great word juvenile, conjures up youth, the naivety of it, and children , however under British law a juvenile can be still aged 18-21yr when sentenced custodially by a court to time in a YOI, funny really, not many people would consider a 20yr to be a juvenile (yes there are caveats)

          Hardly demeaning Q- Does she wear skirts? Ans YES, Q does she wear hair extensions? Ans YES, whats demeaning about me saying it ? Q Does she push for equality,diversity and more females in the sport? Ans Yes, so I'm just helping things along in my own little way, bit like she is really, we have so much in common , its uncanny

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      • shroppyfly

        I would reply but i'm too busy being a Girl.. said Lucy, singling her out...!, well shes the only one wearing hair extensions and a skirt, go figure, Manx , manx , i stood guard at the opening of the tinwall one year

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    • CanadianEh

      Here is some information from the Mayo Clinic:

      "Narcissistic personality disorder is a mental health condition in which people have an unreasonably high sense of their own importance. They need and seek too much attention and want people to admire them. People with this disorder may lack the ability to understand or care about the feelings of others. But behind this mask of extreme confidence, they are not sure of their self-worth and are easily upset by the slightest criticism.

      A narcissistic personality disorder causes problems in many areas of life, such as relationships, work, school or financial matters. People with narcissistic personality disorder may be generally unhappy and disappointed when they're not given the special favors or admiration that they believe they deserve. They may find their relationships troubled and unfulfilling, and other people may not enjoy being around them."

      Which of the drivers ticks the most boxes? I can't imagine!

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  10. Susan

    I’m sorry, the only wired in DNA, is wanting to win and drive fast. When Vettel was a four time WDC, he stayed after the race to help the crew break down equipment, he didn’t hire a PR firm to keep his name in the news and he definitely didn’t bring his politics to the grid. Vettel was at the pinnacle of his sport by not just winning but showed class and integrity. The rest of your comment is your opinion, just like everybody else’s.

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    • TooLate

      In his exit interview Vettel praised the fact that he was able to "bring his politics to the grid" the last couple of years. I was going to continue, but it's not worth my effort, your minds are made up and closed to reason.

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  11. smokey

    Toto was misquoted on this one. He actually said "it's an elephant that King George beat Louise", meaning that King George is the elephant in the room! Just make sure you don't mention the war. I mentioned it once, but I think I got away with it!

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    • shroppyfly

      Not really what have we got about 85 days till race 1, i can live with, but before that , we have now famous FIA Award ceremony, ahhh remember last year those empty front row seats meant for Christian and his daughter, will they attend this year ? to watch Max, Charlie and Sombrero man lift the prizes, odds on the after party will see the Dame in some outrageous dress with unknown celebs . Long winter Naww

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