Lewis Hamilton and George Russell agree as Mercedes chief quits on eve of Brazil GP

This week, after more than ten years with the team, Mercedes announced the departure of Chief Technical Officer Mike Elliott. He was replaced as Technical Director by James Allison in a high-profile move that occurred six months prior.

George Russell and Lewis Hamilton both concur that Mercedes’s on-track difficulties are not exclusively the result of Mike Elliott, the team’s outgoing chief technical officer.

The Silver Arrows are currently experiencing a relative slump despite having won eight consecutive Formula 1 titles. In the last two seasons, Mercedes has only won one race with a car that has struggled since the team initially tried the ‘zeropod’ aerodynamic concept, which did not produce the desired results.

Mercedes has now returned to a more traditional design, but they are still lagging behind Red Bull, the current leaders. Given that Elliott was replaced by James Allison as technical director just six months prior, there has been speculation that Elliott could be to blame for the slump.

This week, after Elliott’s departure was announced, the theory came back to life. However, seven-time world champion Hamilton maintained that it would be unjust to single out a person for the blame.

“We must keep in mind that no one person is responsible for everything. We work together on everything,” he remarked. There isn’t just one person to blame for where we are; rather, it’s a group of people because there are so many moving parts at the factory.

“I regret to say that Mike is leaving. I’ve known him since my days at McLaren. He was there before I raced in Formula One for McLaren. Mike and I get along well very well. Working with him on this team has been a pleasure. He is really a bright person.

“I would always talk to him about aerodynamics. He taught me a lot, and he was fantastic at explaining everything. However, he has made the decision to move on and take a different action. I’m incredibly appreciative of all that he has contributed over the years and I wish him nothing but the best. I have no doubt that he will excel in whatever he does next because of his extraordinary intelligence.”

Co-player Russell responded to Elliott’s exit with a similar assessment of the circumstances. “No, success is never made or broken by a single person; rather, it’s always a collective,” he remarked. There is always a leader, someone who is sort of in charge of guiding the ship.

At the head of the design group are five incredibly gifted designers and engineers; below them is an incredible design office and aerodynamics department that sort of follows their lead. However, as I have stated, there is never a single person—there is always a collective. We win and lose together, as the saying goes.

“Mike has been a huge part of the team and it’s very important to remember that he was the chief aerodynamicist during all of the glory years, and arguably that is, alongside the technical director, that is probably the most vital part of every Formula 1 team. So Mike has been a huge part of that success and I wish him well.”

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