Max Verstappen wins chaotic Austrian Grand Prix Motorsport | 02 Jul 2018

02 July, 2018, 14:32 | Author: Amy Huff
  • Hamilton hopes upgrades will give Mercedes an edge in title fight

Hamilton took the lead from team-mate Valtteri Bottas off the line but was left vulnerable when his rivals all pitted during the early virtual safety auto period while he stayed out on track.

Hamilton dropped from first to fourth - and following a series of furious exchanges with the Mercedes pit wall, he then ran out of power after a loss of fuel pressure with only seven laps to run.

As the final laps of the race unfolded Raikkonen made his move to try and chase race leader Max Verstappen in search of the win, but admits he may have waited too long after trying to look after his tyres in the high temperatures which were causing blisters on many other cars throughout the race.

'It is a tremendously painful day for us, Toto Wolff told Sky Sports.

"The luck I'm having this year feels like a bit of a bad joke at the moment", said Bottas, who had collided with Vettel at the start of the previous race in France.

"It was absolutely nailed in the first lap".

"We've got to understand how we went wrong at both ends".

"We weren't reliable enough, we didn't make the right strategy call, our starts weren't good enough and we didn't manage the tyres as well as we could have done".

Spielberg - Max Verstappen made the most of a rare Mercedes double retirement on Sunday by claiming his first win this year, and Red Bull's first at "home", in an incident-packed Austrian Grand Prix.

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The defending champion's retirement promotes Vettel to the championship lead by a single point ahead of next weekend's British Grand Prix. It resulted in a 15-point swing in Hamilton's favour.

Hamilton was livid and spent much of the race questioning the decision over his race radio.

"It was unbelievable, very hard to manage the tyres, lot of blistering, but we managed to hang on", said Verstappen. "A real shame because we had a great auto and were looking very strong, but we will live to fight another day". We are fighting six cars.

"I needed to catch up with the points, today was a very good day for me, and I hope we can continue like this". It is very rare we have these DNFs, and incredibly unusual to have two on one weekend. By Lap 14, however, Bottas started experiencing loss of hydraulic pressure and slowed down at Turn 4, warranting the need for a virtual safety vehicle (VSC).

James Vowles is the man in charge of strategy at Mercedes and is now under increasing scrutiny.

But Mercedes didn't call in Hamilton, who had been leading the race from the start.

"Lewis, this is James. Ultimately we were the quickest, we should have won, so we've got to keep working hard". "We're starting again on a different tyre compound so let's see what we can do". Tire life began to factor in as Ricciardo had already suffered major blistering on Soft compounds while Hamilton complained of a similar issue over team radio.

"I've got no time left in the tyres", said Hamilton, aware that a straightforward race win was in peril. We thought it wasn't all over, and we wanted to recover the maximum points that we could. "We need to find a bulletproof method to move forward for strategy because if our auto had kept going it was an easy win for us, we were comfortably ahead".

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