How Russell led Mercedes' return to winning F1 ways in Brazil
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How Russell led Mercedes' return to winning F1 ways in Brazil

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The Mercedes W13 has rarely looked like being a winner in 2022, but in Interlagos the team kicked its recent malaise firmly into touch. George Russell led Lewis Hamilton in a remarkable 1-2, which few could have predicted any more than Friday night's topsy-turvy qualifying headed by Kevin Magnussen, as an off-weekend for Red Bull and a track favourable to Mercedes' concept put the Silver Arrows back on top

Lewis Hamilton was at a bit of a loss. When asked to pinpoint quite where the Mercedes turn of speed that enabled team-mate George Russell to lead a 1-2 last weekend had come from, he didn’t really know. What he had instead was a “strange feeling”, a hunch that Red Bull and Ferrari had in fact taken a backwards step for the Brazilian Grand Prix. But was he right – did the Silver Arrows step up a gear or did its rivals regress? Inevitably, the truth sat somewhere in between.

The W13 debuted its final upgrade package of the season in the United States last month. Sporting tweaked wings and a revised floor, Hamilton was able to threaten for victory but only after a disastrous 11-second pitstop for Max Verstappen.

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