Bottas reveals Mercedes got their calculations wrong in Austria

02-07-2019 08:02 | Updated: 02-07-2019 10:26
by Nicolás Quarles van Ufford
General
Bottas reveals Mercedes got their calculations wrong in Austria

Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas has said his team had gotten the calculations wrong in terms of projected lap times of the Silver Arrows, as the Finn barely hung onto third place from the charging Sebastian Vettel.

The two cars of the German team shared the second starting row, with Bottas leading teammate Lewis Hamilton, and both gained a place because of the horrendous start of eventual race-winner Max Verstappen.

However, as the race went on, the pace dropped off quite quickly, with Hamilton also sustaining front wing damage. He dropped to fifth after the first stint while Bottas was a sitting duck for the rapid Verstappen, who overtook the 29-year-old for P2.

Bottas managed to bring his W10 home on the podium, with the Ferrari of Vettel following very closely behind.

"We knew today was going to be hot, but we calculated it a tiny bit wrong as well," Bottas was quoted by Motorsport.com after the ninth Grand Prix of the season.

"I think also the lap time estimates for the lift and coast was not quite spot on. The more we had to do lift and coast, we were losing bigger chunks of time than we actually predicted.

"For me it was the hardest race in terms of power unit management, temperature management, I've never had to manage it so much."

Bottas also analysed that particularly when he was racing other cars closely, he needed to nurse his W10 even more, with overheating being a bigger problem.

"Also we couldn't run the full power of the engine, because of temperatures, so that was costing quite a bit of laptime as well.

"So it was tricky, attacking and defending was pretty much impossible, and always if there was a car close ahead I was getting brighter, bigger warnings on the dash."

Vettel, who finished fourth in the end, opted to pit for a second time when in fourth place, dropping to fifth behind Hamilton but having fresh, soft tyres. He breezed past the Brit in the penultimate lap and came tantalisingly close to taking Bottas as well, but the race ended just a few laps too soon from the German's perspective.

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