Huge fire interrupts George Russell’s interview during Australian GP

Huge fire interrupts George Russell's interview during Australian GP

A massive fire broke out in the pit lane of the Supercars race at Albert Park in Melbourne, distracting Russell, who qualified second for Sunday’s race.

On Saturday, right after Formula 1 qualifying, a huge fire started in the pit lane at Albert Park. George Russell, who placed second in qualifying behind pole-sitter Max Verstappen, was having an interview with a reporter in the media tent before everyone’s focus shifted to the television screens.

James Courtney’s front left wheel caught fire at the start of the Supercars race that began on the racetrack after Autralian Grand Prix qualifying.

When Courtney pulled into the pit lane, the car was completely engulfed in flames and had come to a stop. The 42-year-old Australian driver was able to escape unharmed as fire marshals attempted to put out the inferno.

“I saw the flames and could smell something from the front-left corner,” Courtney told Fox Motorsport after the incident. “I could smell it and see the flames so just tried to get to the pits.”

“We have all the fire stuff to save to the car but I’m not sure what’s going on.”

Russell briefly interrupted his interview with Sky F1 and said, “oh bugger,” before picking up again when he realized the driver was unharmed.

The Mercedes driver was pleased with his qualifying effort, which helped him finish ahead of teammate Lewis Hamilton.

“It was really unexpected,” the British driver said. “The car felt alive and we got the tyres in the right window.”

“The team have been doing an amazing job to get the most out of this car… We haven’t had any upgrades since Bahrain but we’ve seen the progress we’ve made compared to the first two races.”

“That’s really exciting because we know we’ve got more in the locker to come and I’m feeling really comfortably in the car, really happy with the feeling.”

Third on the starting grid in qualifying, Hamilton was pleased with his performance and expressed optimism about moving up in tomorrow’s race.

“We’re all working as hard as we can to get right back up the front so to be this close to the Red Bull is honestly incredible,” the seven-time world champion said. “We hope tomorrow we can give them a bit of a run for their money, and hope the weather is good.”

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