Russell can win immediately says Verstappen

Max Verstappen thinks George Russell can “win immediately” this weekend and put big pressure on Mercedes’ regular driver Valtteri Bottas. Team boss Toto Wolff on Friday denied that Bahrain this weekend is a “shootout” contest between rising youngster Russell – who is substituting for the ill Lewis Hamilton – and Bottas. So much so, according to Red Bull’s Verstappen, that the Dutchman thinks Russell can win on Sunday. Verstappen’s Red Bull boss Christian Horner, meanwhile, thinks putting Russell in the car in Bahrain is good timing in terms of Wolff’s contract negotiations with Hamilton. “It benchmarks him (Russell) against Valtteri,” he said.

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