PUNDIT Anthony Davidson believes George Russell is inwardly raging as Lewis Hamilton is the main man at Mercedes.
In the recent Singapore and Japan Grand Prixs, the British drivers both battled hard on the tracks.
At the Marina Bay circuit, Russell pushed Hamilton for the last spot on the podium during the final lap.
But the seven-time world champion held off pressure before his understudy crashed.
And Sunday's race at Suzuka saw similar when both fought hard on lap six and nearly collided.
Again, Hamilton came out on top to finish in fifth with his team-mate two places behind.
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According to Davidson, the veteran has earned his spot as No1 at the Silver Arrows but it must be angering Russell.
He explained on Sky Sports' F1 podcast: "There's definitely a hierarchy in that team.
"You know, Lewis has earned that status in that team as a seven-time world champion and George can't argue against that.
"George is still the understudy and he's doing a very good job on those occasions where he's got the speed over Lewis to really take the fight to him.
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"But he's doing it in such a George Russell polite way, which is quite humorous to watch, because I know inside the car, he'll be fuming and steaming.
And that's why we see the near misses, the drivers coming, almost to blows, almost to contact, but then he's a good boy on the radio, he's very British about it.
"And there are layers to him, to the annoyance, I think. It always comes over as, 'I'm okay with this, but if you could please, very thankfully, let me through with the next couple of opportunities, it'd be much appreciated.'
"And we'd hear maybe a bit more vocal if things were different. But I think for now, I think he knows where he is in the team."
Russell outscored Hamilton in his debut season at Mercedes last year.
But this term it is the 38-year-old who is ahead by 75 points with six races to go.
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