Mercedes explains choice: "Otherwise you give the victory to Verstappen"

05-08-2020 11:28
by GPblog.com
General
Mercedes explains choice: Otherwise you give the victory to Verstappen

During the closing stages of the first Grand Prix at Silverstone it was both Mercedesses who caused a lot of spectacle. Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton both had to deal with a broken left front tyre. Bottas even had to ride a full lap on that broken tyre, while Hamilton had to ride on three wheels for half of the final lap. The Finn eventually lost his podium place to Max Verstappen. The Red Bull Racing driver also came close to Hamilton, but the Brit finally managed to win the race.

James Vowles explains in a Mercedes debrief what played the head of Mercedes on that last lap: "We really should have let Lewis stop in those last laps for new tyres. His problem arose during the last lap of the race, if we had stopped for new tyres before that, we would have given the win to Verstappen".

Red Bull made the wrong choice

"That's tremendously important to understand. If he had gone ahead, while we were stopping for new tyres, I'm sure Red Bull would have just stayed on the track. What's more, Red Bull's pit stop meant they couldn't win the race. Looking back at the situation, we should have given Lewis new tyres," Vowles looks back on Sunday at Silverstone.

He also explains why Mercedes chose to stay on the track at Hamilton, even after the Bottas puncture. "We had a 30 second lead, Lewis was already seconds slower than normal and his only job was to keep the car on the track. One more lap on that tyre was the best option, even though he was fifteen seconds slower. However, that decision was the wrong one and could have cost us a lot", Vowles concluded.

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