Lewis Hamilton nearly caused ‘disaster’ at Turkish Grand Prix, Ross Brawn claims

The Independent
The Independent

Formula 1 managing director Ross Brawn has said Lewis Hamilton ’s reaction to Mercedes’ strategy at the Turkish Grand Prix almost caused a “disaster”.

Hamilton started 11th on the grid on Sunday due to an engine penalty but had climbed up to third, before his team called him in for a pit stop late in the race. The seven-time champion questioned the tactic and remained out a while longer but ultimately relented.

Upon emerging from the pit lane, Hamilton had lost two places and ended up coming fifth, surrendering his title lead to rival Max Verstappen, who finished second in Istanbul.

Hamilton’s frustration with Mercedes was audible, and Brawn has explained why the Briton’s initial “push-back” against the team nearly had dire consequences.

“The driver is in a bubble,” Brawn wrote in his column on the official F1 website .

“They need to give you information, but what they can’t see is all the data being fed to the pit wall.

“In Lewis’ case, if he didn’t box and the tyres had gone away or there had been a light rain shower, he would have tumbled down the order and that would have been a disaster.

“Once again teams were faced with a very difficult strategic decision. In these scenarios, you’re trusting your judgment, experience and feel.

“As we saw with Lewis, there was a fair bit of initial resistance from within the car about pitting.

“When these situations are not clear-cut and you get a push-back from the driver, it’s easy for a team to back off what they feel was the right decision.”

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