Even after all the adrenaline had drained from his blood, Lewis Hamilton was not completely satisfied with his race. The Brit would have liked his team to have taken a risk, but in the end he has to live with the fact that he didn’t.
The Turkish Grand Prix, in which Lewis Hamilton crossed the finish line fifth. His fifth place could possibly have been third if Mercedes had chosen a better strategy.
When asked if he has discussed the strategy with his team, he replies curtly. “We have talked about it, but there is not much to say. We have scored a good number of points as a team and we will fight again next race,” he sounds diplomatically, but clearly not happy.
When asked, he does go into detail. Shouldn’t he have come in sooner when his team said so? “The fact is that the circuit became drier,” he replies. “We didn’t know if it would dry up completely, but it did get drier. At one point I was third and I was hopeful that I wouldn’t have to make a pit stop for new intermediates and that I could eventually switch to the dry weather tires, which meant I could win positions.”
But the dry-weather tires were able to stay in their warmers. Mercedes asked Hamilton to come in with only a dozen laps to go. The Briton initially refused, but later gave in. By then, however, the damage was already done and he could forget a possible podium.
“Those two scenarios for me: we could have stopped earlier, maybe when I joined Perez. At that point, however, we had no idea if it was going to dry up completely. I don’t have any particular feelings about the strategy. It was frustrating at the time. , because I could see second place and suddenly I was in fifth place again,” he sighs.
Asked if all that radio bickering about his strategy wasn’t bad for his concentration, the seven-time champion said it wasn’t. “No, it doesn’t affect your focus. At that point I only have limited information and of course the team has more information because they see all the other drivers.”
“It’s hard for me to give up my place if you don’t have the whole picture. That’s why you have to trust your team and accept their choices. Then you just have to hope that they are the right choices, because we win and lose when a team. I finally listened to them.”
Still, Hamilton would have preferred to gamble, even in retrospect. He sticks to that. “Could we have stayed out? Who knows. Other drivers lost a lot of positions when they stayed out, so it would have been a risk anyway. We don’t know what would have happened if I had stayed out. However, I like to take risks, so I would have taken the risk,” Lewis said.