Mercedes explains pit stop Hamilton: 'Got to stop taking risks'

10-10-2021 20:05
F1 News
Mercedes explains pit stop Hamilton: 'Got to stop taking risks'

Lewis Hamilton was clearly not satisfied after the Turkish Grand Prix. Mercedes made him come in late for new intermediate tyres, but afterwards the Briton said he could have continued on the same set of tyres until the end. According to engineer Andrew Shovlin the team was sure he would not have finished higher than fifth.

Esteban Ocon was the only driver on track who did not make a pit stop and finished the race on the same tyres. Shovlin explains on "If you look at Esteban [Ocon], he got overtaken by Lance [Stroll] about five or six laps from the end and finished 17 seconds behind them, and that’s how quickly you fall off. We’ll go through it and we’ll double-check, but we’re fairly certain that he would have lost those two places, if not been at risk of more."

Hamilton expressed his frustration over the team radio. According to Shovlin, the team has spoken to the Brit and, in hindsight, he understands the decision to still come in for new tyres. "Lewis is always looking at what’s ahead of him, what’s the most he can get,” Shovlin added. “He’s deeply invested in this championship and we wouldn’t really expect anything other than frustration at a P5 where at one point we thought we might be able to hang on. But we’ll go through that."

'You have to cut the loss'

"We’ve had a debrief with him and now he understands the reasons. I think it’s just the kind of frustration from him [because] at times in that race he thought he was going to be on the podium, and that didn’t come true", the Mercedes engineer continues.

“I think there’s a bit of disappointment in that but if we look at how we operated, it was sensible and in a championship battle there’s a point where you’ve got to stop taking risks and cut your loses. Although those decisions are difficult to do, you’ve got to be strong and you’ve got to take them.” Hamilton is now six points behind Max Verstappen in the championship with six rounds to go.

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