Mercedes explains how Verstappen "in form" managed to outsmart Bottas

05-05-2021 17:15 | Updated: 05-05-2021 20:37
F1 News
Mercedes explains how Verstappen in form managed to outsmart Bottas

After a strong race in Portugal Mercedes leads the constructors' championship 'as usual' and Lewis Hamilton has taken the drivers' championship, although Max Verstappen is much, much closer this year than in previous years. Still, the Brackley-based team did well in Portimao.

Mediums in Q3?

The team themselves, before we get to the Barcelona Grand Prix, also take a brief look back at Portugal through James Vowles' debrief on their Youtube Channel. For example, he discusses the decision to go out on mediums during qualifying in Q3. "In 2020 we also used the medium tyre during Q3. Lewis even took pole with it. The mediums and the softs behave almost identically in Portimao in terms of grip."

But why then did the team drive a faster time in Q2 than in Q3? "This is mainly because of the wind. At the end of Q2 the wind was already getting stronger, but in Q3 it had a big effect on the final lap time," Vowles said. "During the race we also had the hardest wind in a race so far this season."

Bottas vs Verstappen

Vowles also explains how Verstappen was able to make his overtaking move on Bottas: "Valterri's lap before he came in was a bit off. He also had a lot of wheelspin when he came out of the pits, while Max's tyres were warm, and Max was in shape."

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