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Wolff: Mercedes thought two-stop strategy was not competitive

  • Published on 04 Aug 2019 19:08
  • comments 0
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff has hailed the strategists of the Silver Arrows following Lewis Hamilton's win at the Hungarian Grand Prix, after it all but ruled out a two-stop strategy prior to the start of the race.

Hamilton won the event after pitting 22 laps before the end for medium tyres, which allowed him to close in on Max Verstappen who struggled on old hards.

With four laps to go, Hamilton swopped around the outside of Verstappen at Turn 1 to take the lead, and further extend his gap at the top of the drivers' championship

"It was a brilliant execution from the strategy team," Wolff said. "We discussed all variants in the morning and the two-stop seemed pretty much uncompetitive. But they reacted in the right way.

"We took all the learnings from Hockenheim, the radio discipline, the protocol, the strategists working in the background, then James Vowles would evaluate them and all of us giving input worked well today.

"Lewis was catching up to Max and it looked like he could overtake him on the hard tyre, but we were too marginal on brakes and we couldn't continue to follow him in that way. 

"So the only option in order to avoid P2 was to take a risk. At the beginning, it didn't seem that it would. From then on it was when Lewis sniffed the possibility, there was no holding back."

Valtteri Bottas struggled in the second Mercedes as he was sent to the back of the grid early on when he made contact with Charles Leclerc.

The Finn recovered to P8, but despite the disappointing result, Wolff affirms that it will not stain his fight to remain at Mercedes for 2020. 

"We will not be letting one race result influence our decision, it's more about compounding the data, looking at it and making a decision."


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