British driver George Russell suffered a disappointing retirement from the Canadian Grand Prix after a collision with the wall and subsequent brake issues. Starting from fourth on the grid, Russell showed promise early on as he challenged Fernando Alonso for third place. However, on lap 12, Russell made a mistake, running wide into the Turns 8-9 chicane and hitting the inside kerb. This sent him into the exit wall, damaging his front wing and rear-right wheel.
Despite the damage, Russell managed to bring his Mercedes W14 back to the pits for repairs and rejoined the race. Despite the compromised performance of his car, he fought his way up to eighth place. However, on lap 53, Mercedes made the decision to retire the car due to excessive brake wear.
Initially, it was believed that the collision with the wall had caused damage to the brake cooling ducts, leading to increased temperatures and ultimately the brake failure. However, Russell suspects that the true cause of the brake failure was his car not being properly set up to handle the turbulent air caused by running in close proximity to other cars.
Reflecting on his mistake, Russell explained that he went wide into Turn 8 and hit the kerb, but didn’t anticipate the violent response from the sausage kerb. This sent him flying into the air and into the wall. He admitted that he thought his race was over at that point and accepted the consequences of his error, believing that drivers should be punished for their mistakes in Formula 1.
Despite the initial belief that his race was over, Russell was surprised to be able to continue. While the repaired car didn’t feel perfect, it was drivable and he managed to salvage a potential eighth-place finish. However, running in heavy traffic meant the brakes were not in the ideal position, ultimately leading to their failure.
When asked if he believed the brake failure was mostly unrelated to the wall collision, Russell stated that he needs to discuss it further with the team but believes the traffic was the main factor. He explained that the brakes weren’t set up for the position he found himself in due to the unexpected circumstances of the race. Once the brakes reach a certain level of oxidation, there is no recovering from it, regardless of how carefully the driver tries to nurse them.
Overall, it was a frustrating race for George Russell, who showed early promise but ultimately succumbed to the consequences of his mistake and suffered a disappointing retirement due to brake failure.