Bottas rues "mistake" of ruling out one-stop strategy

Valtteri Bottas admitted it was a mistake to think that a one-stop strategy was not possible in the British Grand Prix, after losing out to Mercedes Formula 1 teammate Lewis Hamilton.

Bottas rues "mistake" of ruling out one-stop strategy
Listen to this article

The Finn led the opening stages of the race and appeared to have everything under control as he made the first of two scheduled stops.

But Hamilton turned things around by extending his opening stint – and then was helped by a safety car call giving him an effective free pitstop and the chance to get to the end without another tyre change.

On a day when the Mercedes drivers were given more freedom than usual to go their own way on strategy, Bottas admitted that the team had got it wrong with their predictions.

“Definitely there was an idea to split the cars, one of us going for hard for the second stint, but the idea was for that car to do medium-hard-medium,” he said. 

“[We thought] one stop honestly was out of the question today and that was a mistake from our side. It was by far the quickest strategy today, the medium-hard, but we thought it would be much slower.”

Mercedes decided in their race-morning strategy meeting that the option of splitting strategies should be available to their drivers – otherwise the fight would be decided at the first corner.

Read Also:

Team boss Toto Wolff said: “In our strategy meeting in the morning, actually the drivers brought up whether there was an offset strategy possible for the guy running second, because if you put them on the same tyre, that's probably how the race is going to end.

“Picking up on the suggestion, we decided that the second-place driver would run an offset strategy with the hard tyre, in the middle. We weren't quite sure whether one-stop would make it, probably rather thinking it would be a two[-stop], also because of a lack of data on the hard - and this is exactly how it panned out.

“Obviously both of them drove a brilliant race, both of them would have deserved to win the race, and in that instance the safety car swung in favour of one driver."

Hamilton said that the strategy freedom left him convinced before the start of the race to try something different.

“It’s difficult for the team, because individually we want to win and the team has to take the most balanced approach for both of us,” he said.

“If you do a good enough job in qualifying the first car generally gets priority, it’s quite hard to [reverse] that unless you do it on track or undercut, those kind of things. 

"We had discussed the fastest way to the end was medium-medium-hard, but there were alternative strategies. That was something I’d looked into and I’d already decided at the beginning of the race that I was going to extend the first stint to 20 or 21 [laps]. Did I know we’d stay on a one-stop? No. But we have to be strategists a little bit ourselves.”

Additional reporting by Adam Cooper

shares
comments
Verstappen: Vettel apologised for "disappointing" crash
Previous article

Verstappen: Vettel apologised for "disappointing" crash

Next article

Hamilton "went against the team" by not making late stop

Hamilton "went against the team" by not making late stop
How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future Prime

How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future

Multiple-title-winning designer and team boss Ross Brawn is finally leaving Formula 1 after nearly 50 years in motorsport. But he still has plenty of insights on what’s working and what comes next, as he revealed to Motorsport.com in a far-reaching exclusive interview in Abu Dhabi.

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2022
The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat Prime

The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat

OPINION: Mattia Binotto’s departure from Ferrari will naturally bring a range of changes across the Formula 1 team. But how the changes shape up and the impact they could have is set to be dictated by a key direction Ferrari’s top dogs will need to pick

Formula 1
Nov 30, 2022
The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants Prime

The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants

OPINION: Mercedes endured its worst season of the hybrid Formula 1 era, but was mercifully spared its first winless campaign in over a decade late on. It has owned up to the mistakes it made which led to its troubled W13. And while its task to return to title-challenging contention is not small, its 2022 season seems more like a blip than the beginning of a downward spiral.

Formula 1
Nov 29, 2022
The physical focus bringing out the best from Esteban Ocon Prime

The physical focus bringing out the best from Esteban Ocon

Esteban Ocon likes to point out he’s the first driver since Lewis Hamilton to emerge from a spell as Fernando Alonso’s teammate with a superior overall points record. While some may disagree, as LUKE SMITH discovered, the 2021 Hungarian GP winner reckons it’s not just luck which has made him France’s pre-eminent Formula 1 driver of the moment…

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2022
How Red Bull's dynamic leader Mateschitz shaped its F1 philosophy Prime

How Red Bull's dynamic leader Mateschitz shaped its F1 philosophy

The death of Dietrich Mateschitz last month has not only deprived Red Bull of its visionary founder, it has shorn Formula 1 of one of its most influential benefactors. Mateschitz himself was famously media-shy, preferring to let the brand do the talking on his behalf. And, while it’s now normal to speak of Red Bull F1 titles and champions made, Mateschitz never assumed it would be easy or even possible – as ANTHONY ROWLINSON discovered during this previously unpublished interview from 2006…

Formula 1
Nov 27, 2022
Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom? Prime

Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom?

OPINION: Teams that have dominated for long periods throughout Formula 1's history often take years to get back to the top of the tree once they've slipped down. But it remains to be seen whether the same will happen to Mercedes after a challenging 2022 season

Formula 1
Nov 24, 2022
What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi Prime

What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi

Arguably the favourite in the battle to finish second-best in 2022's Formula 1 standings, Sergio Perez's two-stop strategy at Abu Dhabi couldn't take him ahead of Charles Leclerc when the music stopped - and several key factors ultimately precluded him from the much-coveted runner-up spot.

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2022
The Abu Dhabi momentum that can propel Leclerc and Ferrari to F1 2023 success Prime

The Abu Dhabi momentum that can propel Leclerc and Ferrari to F1 2023 success

OPINION: Charles Leclerc achieved his target of sealing runner-up in the 2022 world championship with a masterful drive behind Max Verstappen in Abu Dhabi. And that race contained key elements that may help him, and Ferrari, go one better in Formula 1 2023

Formula 1
Nov 22, 2022