George denied a spectacular maiden Grand Prix win by a Mercedes strategy blunder and a late puncture
But a second pit stop called by Mercedes led to the wrong tryes being fitted to Russell’s car and, after the mistake had been rectifieda lap later, he had dropped to fifth,
Russell drive brilliantly to get back up to second, but a puncture then ruined his chances of victory. After repairs he was 15th and only had enough time left to get up to ninth place. The consolation was the first Championship points of his two-season career.
Hamilton missed the race because of a positive coronavirus test. It’s unclear whether or not the World Champion will return to race in the final Grant Prix of 2020 in Abu Dhabi next weekend.
Mexican Perez won the Sakhir race to claim his maiden victory, but Russell’s was an equally eye-catching performance with excellent form in qualifying followed by an outstanding drive when only sheer bad luck prevented a deserved win.
Russell tweted after the race: Gutted. Absolutely gutted. It just wasn’t meant to be tonight, but I’m proud of the job we did out there. We’ll get our opportunity again. Congrats to Sergio Perez. No-one deserves a win more than him.”