Mercedes Mastermind reveals key difference between Lewis Hamilton’s biggest rivals

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Lewis Hamilton has had many legendary teammates at Mercedes and McLaren during his career. So when George Russell joined the brood in 2022, it was inevitable that he would be compared to his predecessors.

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On the most recent episode of the Beyond The Grid podcast, Mercedes technical director Mike Elliott spoke about the difference between Russell and bitter Hamilton rival Nico Rosberg.

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Mike Elliott compares George Russell to Nico Rosberg

Elliott mentioned the things that impressed him about Russell this year, and of course his consistency made the list. But more than that, Elliott appreciated George Russell’s compatibility with engineers.

“He understands, you know, you can have a conversation about what you think the car is doing technically and he tunes into that quickly and he’s able to give you feedback that’s easy to use and understand. And that will be really useful to us, in the future, said Elliott.

SPA, BELGIUM – AUGUST 25: George Russell of Mercedes and Great Britain and from left during previews for the Belgian F1 Grand Prix at Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps on August 25, 2022 in Spa, Belgium. (Photo by Peter J. Fox/Getty Images)

Of course, the question that followed was whether Nico Rosberg was a similar driver. Rosberg was renowned for his analytical mind on the grid.

Nico was very good at giving very useful feedback to the engineers. I think the difference I would say with George [Russell] are there times when you kinda forget he’s not an engineer,” admitted the technical director.

Sometimes you discuss things with a driver and you explain it and he nods and says “yes, I understand”, then a few days later you get a question and you think, “oh no, you don’t have not quite heard”. With George, that doesn’t really happen. You come back a few days later and discuss the subject and he clearly picked it up, and he got it. I think that’s impressive.

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This is truly high praise from the technical director of Mercedes who has worked alongside the greats for so many years.

Rosberg doesn’t regret rivalry with Lewis Hamilton

For Mike Elliott, putting George Russell above Nico Rosberg in this regard means a lot. Especially given Rosberg’s tumultuous history with Lewis Hamilton, their rivalry was legendary.

SOCHI, RUSSIA – MAY 01: Nico Rosberg of Germany and Mercedes GP talks to team mate Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP as he celebrates winning the podium during the Formula One Grand Prix of Russia at Sochi Autodrom on May 1, 2016 in Sochi, Russia. (Photo by Dan Istitene/Getty Images)

As many know, the rivalry between Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg started and ended during their time with Mercedes. After seasons of hostile battle, Rosberg finally clinched the world championship title from Hamilton in 2016.

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After retiring from F1 following the triumph, Rosberg recently opened up about his past rivalry with Hamilton.

I don’t regret the battle with Lewis», Rosberg replied when asked if he had any regrets during his time at Mercedes. “It was a sensational moment and a mega fight. I’m very proud of it. In the meantime, we have returned to neutral, which is good.

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WATCH THIS STORY: Ugliest moments of the Hamilton-Rosberg F1 rivalry

Rosberg and Hamilton’s rivalry was renewed in Extreme E where the two have teams. In the meantime, it’s good to hear that Rosberg is taking their rivalry with such a healthy attitude right now.

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