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Mercedes was again super dominant in Formula 1 last weekend in Austria. Despite the number of points it didn’t exactly run smoothly for the German race stable. Mercedes strategist James Vowles explains why.
Drivers were told that they were struggling with big problems in their gearbox. So big even, that they weren’t allowed to drive on the kerbs anymore. With a delay in lap times as a result. Vowles versus Mercedes youtube channel: “The Austrian circuit is very aggressive, especially with the kerbs. But to make a good lap you have to use those kerbs. That gave us electrical problems. It was a big problem that could have knocked out both cars”
Mercedes’ strategy also left a lot to be desired. To everyone’s surprise not one of the Mercedes drivers came in for a pit stop, and therefore missed an excellent opportunity for fresh tyres: “Lewis had lost a lot of time and was probably behind Perez and Albon. Albon was incredibly fast on the fresh tyres and we had to discuss whether we thought it was worth finding out. That took a lot of time.”