George Russell feeling ‘very thankful’ after escaping unscathed from collision

George Russell said he was "very thankful for halo" after his crash in the Belgian Grand Prix.

The Williams driver had his afternoon ended early on at Spa when he hit a loose tyre at hit speed.

Alfa Romeo's Antonio Giovinazzi had crashed just seconds earlier which sent debris flying across the track.

Russell was unable to pass without being hit and smashed into the wall as he attempted to take evasive action.

But he was able to emerge unscathed and spoke about the safety of modern F1 cars which helped soften the blow from the shunt 

"If I went to the right, that's where Antonio's car was, and at the left side of the track, I had a massive impact with the tyre," Russell said.

"But I have to say you feel much safer in the car now with the halo.

"When I saw this massive tyre coming towards me, it was quite scary to be honest.

"So I'm very thankful that we have this halo on the car right now.

"I'm all fine. Just a little bit frustrated obviously. But that's racing sometimes."

Russell was straight on team radio and said: "There was nowhere I could go, guys."

The Brit had qualified 15th before his race was ended on lap nine which bought out the safety car.

It meant race leader Lewis Hamilton had his early lead diminished but he quickly reestablished it to take his fifth victory of the season.

He led home a Mercedes 1-2 with Max Verstappen third and the Renaults of Daniel Ricciardo and Esteban Ocon fourth and fifth.

Hamilton's lead in the championship is now 47 points heading into next week's Italian Grand Prix at Monza.

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