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Russell said Wolff's radio call almost made him crash

Surprise Austrian Grand Prix winner George Russell said his Mercedes team boss almost made him crash after he took the lead in Sunday's race.

Principal Toto Wolff, whose team had not won a race since 2022, shouted "George, you can win this" over the radio without checking where the driver was on track.

Russell, whose win was only the second of his Formula One career, told the boss to just let him drive as he fended off the threat of McLaren's Oscar Piastri after taking the lead when Red Bull's Max Verstappen and McLaren's Lando Norris collided.

"It was pretty difficult. And then suddenly I had Toto screaming in my ear, 'you can win this'. And I almost crashed when he screamed into my ears. It was that loud," Russell told reporters.

"I think it just goes to show the passion that we all share. And it's obviously been a tough couple of years for us. It feels great to be back on the top step."

The last Mercedes win was also down to Russell, who triumphed in Brazil in November 2022 for the team's sole win of that season.

They had won eight constructors' championships in a row between 2014-21.

Wolff told reporters he knew all about driver psychology and his spontaneous reaction had been "the single dumbest thing I've done in 12 years at Mercedes.

"I will be forever ashamed because you look at where you message the driver and you don’t do it during braking or in high-speed corners," added the Austrian.

"I didn’t look at the GPS...I just emotionally pressed the button and said ‘we can win this’. I could have taken him out with that message. Imagine how that could have felt.

"I’m emotional. I enjoy us doing well and I enjoy seeing Lewis (Hamilton) and George doing well. I was just carried away with that situation, but seriously,