Nico Rosberg feels George Russell intentionally cut the second chicane at start of the 2023 F1 Spanish GP
Nico Rosberg feels George Russell might have gotten away with intentionally cutting the second chicane at the start of the Spanish Grand Prix. After the first turn, a second chicane has been put in place that the drivers have to take in order to not gain an undue advantage by leaving the track.
At the start of the race, when Lando Norris and Lewis Hamilton had a minor contact, George Russell, who was following them, took evasive action and used the escape route and the second chicane. This ultimately helped the Mercedes driver gain a few places out of the melee. Russell was investigated by the stewards, but came out unscathed.
After the race, Red Bull boss Christian Horner claimed that George Russell had gotten away with jumping the second chicane. Talking about it on the Sky Sports broadcast, 2016 world champion Nico Rosberg said:
"He definitely maximised the opportunities. Really aggressive, great start. It's almost like he planned to go that way. As soon as there was a bit of a squeeze, 'oh I'm going to dive straight there and at least not lose any more time'. So he did a really good job. It was perfect."
Fellow presenter agrees with Nico Rosberg's verdict on the George Russell incident
Fellow presenter and former racing driver Naomi Schiff agreed with Rosberg on the George Russell incident. She said:
"I feel the same way. I made a bit of a funny face when looking at it. From the first angle it looks like he was squeezed off and in the second angle we saw, it looked like there was enough room for him to go around. But it looks like he made that choice."
"That's the way he can go, there is a route he can do it. He's done it all of the right things. I guess maybe from the FIA's side, or F1, they should think there should be lose nothing to lose by going with the alternative route. But there's been no investigation, no criticism of it, so he's done it all the right way."
George Russell ended up with a podium finish at the Spanish GP. He did extremely well to reach P3, behind winner Max Verstappen and P2 Lewis Hamilton, after starting the race in P12. The double podium is another positive step for Mercedes as the team tries to get back to being competitive at the front of the grid.