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Bottas: I wasn't scarified to benefit Hamilton

  • Published on 03 Sep 2018 16:34
  • comments 7
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Valtteri Bottas doesn't believe that his race strategy was compromised in order to give Lewis Hamilton the chance to win the Italian Grand Prix. Bottas was kept out on degrading tyres while holding up Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen, who was in the net lead of the race.

Raikkonen couldn't pass Bottas, who was in a fight with Max Verstappen for third place. Verstappen had already made a pit stop and was closing the gap, meaning when Bottas made his stop, he was further behind the Dutchman than before.

But Bottas doesn't believe that his strategy was ultimately set in place to allow Hamilton the chance of winning the race. He pointed out that he was able to attack Verstappen with much fresher tyres towards the end of the Grand Prix.

“When we went through everything, all the scenarios for the race, we saw that with me starting fourth and Lewis form third behind the Ferrari, we saw no point for us to try and opt for the optimal strategy and saw an opportunity for me to go long,” Bottas said.

“I think, in the end, it was good for me to have fresh tyres to attack in the end and also, at the same time, it benefited Lewis, helping the team. I wouldn’t call it sacrifice my race, because the pit window here is so big with the tyres we had this weekend.”

Mercedes said that it would analyse whether or not it would introduce team orders following the Italian Grand Prix. Bottas is now almost 100 points behind Hamilton in the driver's championship, following the Briton's victory at Monza. 

Replies (7)

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  • Freguz

    Posts: 160

    Scarified...? Freudian slip

    • + 3
    • Sep 3 2018 - 18:04
  • Except it kinda was. Merc clearly didnt mind leaving you to the wolves as long as Hammy got that win.

    • + 2
    • Sep 3 2018 - 19:21
    • Bottas was clearly playing support role. But it wasn't like Ferrari leaving Raikkonen out an extra 15 laps to block someone else and then finish 5th because of it. If anything the strategy worked out to improve his chances of a podium finish. In the end it paid off.

      • + 1
      • Sep 4 2018 - 01:07
  • Bhurt

    Posts: 320

    I believe him. 100%. The plan all along, discussed before the start of the race, was for Bottas to run behind Verstappen the whole race and fall so far behind the leaders that Kimi would emerge from his pit-stop right behind him. That was totally the plan from the beginning and at no point did they deviate from their original plan.

    • + 1
    • Sep 3 2018 - 19:58
  • NSBiker

    Posts: 18

    From what I could see, Merc missed a golden opportunity to reduce Vettel's point score.
    In the latter stages, Bottas was hounding Max V. in order to take 3rd. Max already had a 5 second penalty so all Bottas needed to do was to sit 3 seconds behind Max.
    Without the need to defend, RedBull would have given Max the Hurry-Up to be more than 5 seconds clear of Vettel. End result, Max gets 4th, Bottas still gets 3rd and Vettel is 5th with 2 fewer points.
    Alternatively, if RedBull had been on-it, they would have instructed Max to let Bottas go and not defend. Then Max would have had a tow and should have been able to stay 5 seconds clear of Vettel. Especially if Merc had given Bottos the Hurry-Up to help keep Max 5 seconds clear of Vettel. Again, 2 more points clear for Lewis in what is going to be an interesting battle.

    • + 1
    • Sep 3 2018 - 19:58
  • denis1304

    Posts: 284

    he's delusional

    • + 1
    • Sep 3 2018 - 22:31
  • Bottas is deluded and quite happy to play second fiddle to goldenboy as he knows he doesn't have what it takes to be a champion. ..although personally I'd rather drive for the slowest team than be someone's bitch.. guess he has no principles.

    • + 0
    • Sep 4 2018 - 10:50

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