Mercedes take "tactical opportunity" to change Bottas' PU

26-09-2021 10:13 | Updated: 26-09-2021 10:57
F1 News
Mercedes take tactical opportunity to change Bottas' PU

It's a very strange move by Mercedes to have Valtteri Bottas start from the back for the second race in a row. Especially since Sochi is normally one of the best circuits for the Finn. Yet he will start from 17th on Sunday afternoon and Mercedes have confirmed that it is a "tactical move", as Max Verstappen will start from 20th.

On Twitter, Mercedes says that "the team has taken the tactical opportunity to add another engine in Valtteri Bottas' pool for the rest of the season." They don't say directly that this will stop Red Bull Racing's plans, but with Lewis Hamilton starting from P4 they will want to do everything they can to keep Verstappen from scoring points in Russia.

Start with Verstappen from the back

As a result, Verstappen will not only have to pass Charles Leclerc in the opening stages, but also Bottas. Otherwise, the Dutchman would probably only have had to deal with the Finn halfway through the race, around the podium positions. Now Bottas has most likely been given the task of forming a blockade for Verstappen, preventing him from making a quick advance.

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