Chief strategist Mercedes James Vols talked about why the Grand Prix of Australia “Silver arrows” has decided to spend a pit-stop Lewis Hamilton very early on the 17th lap, which ultimately led to the loss of leadership, as Sebastian Vettel stopped six laps later.
“We knew that in case the spot will be behind Kimi and Verstappen, but if we are faced with the tires, the rivals saw it, he Wouls Sky Sports F1. – Of course, we would have not much chance to overtake these cars. But the interesting point was that in the case of our stop from Verstappen had a chance to get ahead of Kimi in the battle for fourth position.
Why? Ferrari left Kimi on the track and in the pit stop Verstappen would we get enough space on the 20th lap and was able to win the race.
Was it worth it error in the strategy of the victory of Mercedes in Melbourne?
This decision was not easy. I decided that Max will stay, but this did not happen. You saw what happened then: at the exit from the pit lane Vettel gained an advantage in 0.6 seconds.
If Verstappen stopped on lap earlier, we would have won this race”.
By the end of the 13th lap advantage over Hamilton, with Vettel reached 1.9 seconds, but by the time of arrival in the boxes handicap was almost leveled.
“After the start it all went rather slowly, but it’s fine for the track in Melbourne. Then we began to attack, Vettel answered – continued chief strategist Mercedes. By about the eighth round, we said to Lewis: “Give your maximum and let’s see if we can create a gap”. Vettel immediately responded. All this has led to problems with the tyres, with Sebastian back into the window pit stop. This was a critical moment of the race”.
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