Russell reveals three main F1 'factors' dominating GPDA meetings

© XPB 

George Russell says three "factors" involving F1 are currently at the top of the Grand Prix Drivers Association's agenda.

Russell was appointed a director of the GPDA in 2021, the Mercedes driver working alongside the association's chairman Alex Wurz and legal consultant Anastasia Fowle.

Russell says his role equates to being "the spokesperson from the collective group" when it comes to F1's safety and sporting concerns but also regarding motorsport in general.

"I think it’s a very united group at the moment, between all of the drivers," explained Russell last weekend in Monza.

"We talk regularly about certain issues or topics that we want to improve – not just necessarily in Formula 1, but in the sport globally.

Read also:

"Ultimately, there does need to be somebody who’s the spokesperson to take that forward.

"But I’ve got a huge amount of help from Alex Wurz and Anastasia Fowle who, to be honest, do most of the heavy lifting and I’m just the one in the background to follow up and help where I’m needed."

While the GPDA does not meet on a regular basis, drivers are kept abreast of the association's agenda and frequently exchange views in a dedicated group chat on WhatsApp.

"All of the drivers have a group chat," Russell said. "Sometimes it’s just memes – there’s a few unexpected people who send a few random memes – but it’s okay.

"It is always good whenever there’s something ongoing or there’s a delay or something that somebody wants to talk about or improve.

"There’s obviously a lot of changes going on with the sport at the moment, with the sprint races, the format, the Alternative Tyre Allocation, the conditions, the safety aspect of things obviously."

Sergio Perez (MEX) Red Bull Racing RB19 at the start of the race. 27.08.2023. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 14, Dutch Grand Prix, Zandvoort, Netherlands, Race Day. -, EMail: © Copyright: Miltenburg / XPB Images

Russell detailed the current three main areas where F1 drivers are voicing their concerns and which are at the top of the GPDA's agenda.

"There’s three factors," Russell said. "One, you’ve got safety which is obviously, to a degree, quite self-explanatory, you want the circuits to be as safe as possible and not have unnecessary risks.

"There’s always going to be an element of danger and you want the cars to be as safe as possible naturally but you’re never going to be able to eliminate all of the risk.

"You’ve then got the on-track entertainment side of things and how exciting the races are," the 25-year-old continued. "Tyres are a factor with the degradation, the format, DRS positioning, etc, etc.”

"Then you’ve got the third one, which is probably the least important [to everyone else] but to the drivers, it’s important. It’s about how it feels to drive the cars.

"We want the fastest cars, the best cars, the latest cars, the most amount of power and we think that would add to the spectacle. But you can’t often achieve all of these topics."

Despite Red Bull and Max Verstappen's unwavering dominance that many believe threaten the sport's growth, Russell is convinced that "Formula 1 is in a good place".

"If it wasn’t for the Red Bull’s dominance for the last 12 months, there has been quite a lot of exciting racing, close racing in good battles," he said.

"That’s where it is at the moment for this fight for second, it is in a good place.

"Maybe the tyres have been a little bit too hard recently and it’s too many one-stops and not enough degradation to add a bit of spice in there but equally when the tyres are rubbish, we also complain.

"It’s trying to find that right balance and it’s never quite clear cut."

Keep up to date with all the F1 news via Facebook and Twitter