Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff believes George Russell deserved the podium after crashing on the last lap of the Singapore Grand Prix.
While chasing Lando Norris in the closing stages of the race, Russell crashed into the barriers at Turn 10 on the final lap. While this accident caused his teammate Lewis Hamilton to reach the podium, it caused Mercedes to lose important points.
“It was great to have Lewis on the podium,” Wolff told Sky Sports. "But it's a shame for George because he worked so hard for this." said.
“A third and fourth place would have been better, we would have got a lot of points, but now we have lost 22 points against Ferrari.”
Mercedes was the only team to pit at the front when the virtual safety car came out. When Russell asked on the team radio how he could win the race, Wolff believed this was the best option to maximize Mercedes' points.
“It was clear that it would be difficult to win the race if we just stayed static,” Wolff said. "I said 'Let's do it, the data is solid' and we did it, but the result was only a podium for Lewis." said.
Singapore was a race that ended Red Bull's winning streak in 2023. However, Wolff expects the team to return at the next race in Suzuka.
“We've had outliers in Singapore over the years where we won almost every race but then came here and weren't really good,” Wolff said. So I expect them to come back in the next race.” said.