Lewis Hamilton ‘overruled’ the Mercedes pitwall, but Red Bull claims the tyres were ‘hazardous.’
Lewis Hamilton’s tyres were “hazardous,” according to Christian Horner, at the Turkish Grand Prix.
Christian Horner of Red Bull has chimed in on the Lewis Hamilton tyre issue, claiming that Mercedes’ competitors believe the seven-time world champion forced them to make a late pitstop, costing them a possible podium result.
Hamilton did not pit until lap 51 of the 58-lap race, as his timings began to slip at Istanbul.
After pitting, the seven-time world champion was furious with his race engineer Peter Bonnington as the Mercedes slid from third to fifth, slipping behind Charles Leclerc’s Ferrari.
However, Horner believes Hamilton waited so long to come in that the tyres were “hazardous” and Mercedes had no choice but to pit.
“Obviously difficult to say since I’m not on their pitwall,” Horner said to Sky Sports F1. ‘However, it sounded as if Lewis overruled the team.’
“It’s difficult to say because you hoped he’d make it to the end.”
“It was unavoidable that he would have to pit, and certainly the point at which they pitted was to our advantage.”
“The tyres overheated, blistered considerably, and the pace was lost at that point, Charles. The critical moment for us was deciding when to pit Checo.
“We could have kept him out to keep Lewis at bay, but we decided to pit him to ensure we got that track position.” We didn’t think those tyres would make it all the way to the finish line.
“We never imagined it would go to slicks after talking to the driver, obtaining comments, looking at the tyres, and the time to run.”
“Getting the tyres through a phase and grinding them down to get to that smooth was the key.” It was all about not bludgeoning them too soon.
“That’s why we went first with Max [Verstappen] and chose to bank the position with [Sergio Perez] Checo, so Lewis would have to pass him on the track. Today, Checo did an outstanding job.” The race was split between Hamilton and Perez, with the Mexican holding off his teammate’s major title opponent.
As a result, Hamilton’s tyre deterioration may have sped up as he tried to find a way out. “Brinkwire News Summary.”