George Russell has sent an internal letter apologising to his Williams team after crashing out of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix behind the Safety Car.
He was running in 10th place at the time, on course for both the first points finish of his 34-race career, and Williams’ first of the season.
The letter, seen by RaceFans, is addressed to the team and was sent to all members of staff. In it, Russell offered his “sincere apologies” for the mistake, taking full responsibility for it and describing how he had struggled to deal with the disappointment in the 48 hours since the race.
“There was one reason and one reason only why we were in a points scoring opportunity this weekend,” Russell told his team. “That was because every single one of you are giving 100% and pushing this race car to its limit, week in week out.”
He admitted they might have “come away with a result” had he been more cautious during the Safety Car period, when he crashed on the approach to Acqua Minerale. “I wish more than anything that I had kept it out of the wall and brought home a point or two,” he said.
However Russell insisted the crash will not change his approach to racing. “We’re racers, we’re not here to play it safe,” he wrote. “We go racing to push the boundaries. It will result in massive disappointment here and there, but the second we lift the foot off the throttle and start operating at 95%, we may as well stay home.”
RaceFans understands Russell’s gesture was well-received within the team, which in the two years to date has scored just one point finish. That came courtesy of Robert Kubica’s 10th place in a rain-affected race at Hockenheim last year.
Russell acknowledged the team’s ongoing struggles as they recover from their 2019 low. “We all know that we have a car that needs to be pushed to the edge, and sometimes beyond, to fight for points at the moment,” he said. “I can feel that we’re getting there, slowly but surely.
“No doubt when it comes, it won’t stop and we’ll be on a roll. The future is bright for the team.”
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2020 F1 season