Russell Completes 123 Laps in Pirelli Tyre Test for Force India
Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport Reserve Driver George Russell, took part in the Pirelli Formula 1 Tyre Test for the Sahara Force India Formula One Team - setting 123 laps in his first day in the VJM11 around the Circuit de Catalunya.
Fresh off the back of his 2nd victory of the season in the FIA Formula 2 Championship at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona, Russell was back in action around the 4.655km Spanish circuit, making his first appearance in 2018 F1 machinery.
The post Barcelona test is the first time since winter testing that the F1 teams have been in action outside of a Grand Prix weekend. Russell's target was to provide valuable data for Pirelli in developing their range of tyre compounds for the F1 teams into the 2019 season.
In order to strictly focus on tyre testing, changes to the car were not permitted. Russell set the 11th fastest lap time of the session (1:21.478s) on the prototype tyres, completing 123 laps in the process - which was the equivalent of two complete Spanish Grand Prix distances.
George Russell "I thoroughly enjoyed getting back behind the wheel of the Sahara Force India Formula One car.
Our test program was set out by Pirelli, testing a number of prototype tyres for 2019 and we managed to cover 123 laps in the process.
Everything ran smoothly and I was happy with everything we achieved"
Russell will next be in action for the fourth round of the 2018 FIA Formula 2 Championship, on the streets of Monte-Carlo on the 24-26th May. He currently sits 3rd overall on the championship, with 62 points - after taking two victories in the past three races of the championship.
FIA F2 action begins with Practice on Thursday 24th May, with Qualifying following later in the afternoon. The Feature Race will be take place on Friday 25th May, as the F1 paddock takes the traditional break from track action. The Sprint Race will follow on the Saturday - the day before the 2018 Formula 1 Monaco Grand Prix.
Images: Courtesy of Force India F1 Team