Hungarian Grand Prix – Mercedes’ team boss Toto Wolff says that P8 was all they could really hope for from Valtteri Bottas after first lap contact with Leclerc.
Valtteri Bottas finished down in P8 after being forced to pit early in the race after a poor opening lap. Having got off the line well from P2, he locked up into Turn 1 and this allowed teammate Lewis Hamilton to come back at him through Turn 2. Hamilton managed to get the pass completed through Turn 2, with Bottas then being pounced on by Charles Leclerc.
The Ferrari and the Merc made slight contact into Turn 4, resulting in some minor front wing damage for the Finn. He then lost position to Sebastian Vettel and pitted for a new front wing and a set of Hard tyres.
Coming back as the race progressed, the long second stint on the Hards meant slow but steady progress, with Bottas managing to snatch P8 from McLaren’s Lando Norris in the closing stages.
Speaking afterwards, his team boss Toto Wolff spoke of his disappointment with how the race unfolded for him: “I am really disappointed for him. We were all pumped after yesterday’s qualifying performance was so great. He could have easily been on pole.”
“He wanted to do particularly well and that went all wrong – touching with Lewis, touching with Leclerc and from then on, there is nothing more to expect from anybody because you know you have just blown it.”
Asked about the chances of Bottas staying on at the team in 2020 after two bad races in a row, Wolff refused to be drawn on the situation and said: “I don’t think we want to made a decision from one bad day. We need to look at all data, consider lots of factors that speaks for him and speaks against him.”
“I don’t even want a public discussion on his staying or not. He has had some great input and value in the team and we want to discuss this behind closed doors. What the merit is with having a young driver on the team with all the risks and reward of that and also with having Valtteri on the team with all the risks and reward of that.”
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