Bottas: Angry radio message in French GP didn't go too far

Mercedes Formula 1 driver Valtteri Bottas believes he didn't go too far with his angry team radio message during the French Grand Prix, in which he slammed the team's one-stop strategy.

Bottas: Angry radio message in French GP didn't go too far

Bottas was looking strong in the opening stages of the race at Paul Ricard, shadowing Red Bull's Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton in third.

Leader Verstappen came in for a second stop for medium tyres on lap 32, which proved the optimal strategy for the race.

Knowing it would lose the race by default if it were to follow Red Bull's strategy, Mercedes decided to leave both Hamilton and Bottas out until the end of the race on worn hard tyres.

For Hamilton, that gamble nearly worked as he managed to keep Verstappen at bay until the penultimate lap, when the Dutchman swooped past.

In Bottas' case however, the one-stopper left him vulnerable to both Verstappen and the second Red Bull of Sergio Perez, who overtook him to grab the final podium spot.

Realising his race was compromised by the one-stop strategy, Bottas reacted angrily on the Mercedes team radio, shouting: "Why the f*ck does no one listen to me when I say it's going to be a two-stopper?!" F***ing hell."

After the race, Bottas explained that his anger surfaced because the team didn't opt for a two stop strategy - which turned out to be the winning one - as he struggled to keep his tyres alive until the end.

"I think the winning strategy today was a two-stop. It is easy to say afterwards but that is how it is," Bottas told Sky Sports F1.

"As a team I think we were too focussed on completing the one stop thinking it was the best but it wasn't.

"I had no front tyres left for the last 10-15 laps so it was really just trying to get the car home. It was not fun the last stint."

Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes W12 and Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB16B battle

Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes W12 and Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB16B battle

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

When asked by Autosport if his radio message went a bit too far, Bottas said he was just speaking his mind about what he thought was happening.

"I was making very clear what I was thinking," he added. "I was suggesting a two-stop earlier in the race but the team went one-stop and here we are."

Read Also:

Bottas said he was a "sitting duck" as both Verstappen and Perez easily passed him in the final stint.

"You feel like a sitting duck, it is quite simple," he explained.

"Of course, I tried everything I could. I tried to finish on the podium but the tyres were completely gone so [I had] no chance.

"I think we thought the tyres would last a lot better than they did, I think that was the biggest thing. We thought the hard tyre could do nearly the whole race but that was not the case."

When asked if his Mercedes team could have done more for him today, Bottas said his strategy prevented him from fighting for victory: "If I did a two-stop for sure we would have been on the podium and fighting for the win."

shares
comments

Related video

Mercedes had "no choice" but to pit Bottas first in French GP

Previous article

Mercedes had "no choice" but to pit Bottas first in French GP

Next article

Sainz: Ferrari’s F1 tyre degradation twice as bad as rivals in France

Sainz: Ferrari’s F1 tyre degradation twice as bad as rivals in France
Load comments
How Ferrari has brought the best from F1’s smooth operator Plus

How Ferrari has brought the best from F1’s smooth operator

As a young boy, Carlos Sainz was schooled by his father in the special folklore surrounding Ferrari in Formula 1. Now an established grand prix ace – and a Ferrari driver to boot – Sainz opens up to BEN ANDERSON about driving for the team of his childhood hero, and of his own boyhood dreams

How Hungarian GP thriller sounded alarm bell for F1 2022 cars Plus

How Hungarian GP thriller sounded alarm bell for F1 2022 cars

OPINION: The 2021 Hungarian Grand Prix may not have been a thrill-a-minute overtaking fest, but it's a race that will live long in the memory as one of the best of the current era of Formula 1. And as F1 moves to regulations in 2022 aimed at boosting overtaking, Hungary showed the balance it must strike with its new machinery as not to deny similarly tense spectacles

Was Hamilton's Hungary solo start a good or bad look for F1? Plus

Was Hamilton's Hungary solo start a good or bad look for F1?

OPINION: Different perspectives had Lewis Hamilton’s solo second standing start in Formula 1’s 2021 Hungarian Grand Prix as fabulous or farcical. But did it make the championship appear too silly for the sake of a moment of high-charged sporting drama?

Formula 1
Aug 4, 2021
Why unseen Hungary heroics could be the making of F1's most overlooked driver Plus

Why unseen Hungary heroics could be the making of F1's most overlooked driver

The chaotic start to the Hungarian GP set the scene for F1's less heralded drivers to make a name for themselves. Esteban Ocon did just that to win in fine style, but further down the order one driver was making his first visit to the points and - while the circumstances were fortunate - took full advantage of the chance presented to him

Formula 1
Aug 3, 2021
Hungarian Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Hungarian Grand Prix Driver Ratings

This was race that showcased the best and worst of Formula 1, producing a first time winner and a memorable comeback to a podium finish. Avoiding trouble at the start and astute strategy calls were key to success, but where some drivers took full advantage, others made key errors that cost them dearly

Formula 1
Aug 2, 2021
The “heart-breaking” call that led to Ocon’s Hungarian GP triumph Plus

The “heart-breaking” call that led to Ocon’s Hungarian GP triumph

Set to restart the red-flagged Hungarian Grand Prix in second, Esteban Ocon had some doubts when he peeled into the pits to swap his intermediate tyres for slicks. But this "heart-breaking" call was vindicated in spectacular fashion as the Alpine driver staved off race-long pressure from Sebastian Vettel for a memorable maiden Formula 1 victory

Formula 1
Aug 2, 2021
The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career Plus

The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career

Emerson Fittipaldi’s decision to go racing with his brother led to him falling out of F1, but he bloomed again on the IndyCar scene. NIGEL ROEBUCK considers a career of two halves

Formula 1
Jul 31, 2021
Why Mercedes is pleased to be in the Hungary hunt at a 'Red Bull track' Plus

Why Mercedes is pleased to be in the Hungary hunt at a 'Red Bull track'

Mercedes ended Friday practice at the Hungaroring with a clear gap to Red Bull thanks to Valtteri Bottas’s pace in topping FP2. But there are other reasons why the Black Arrows squad feels satisfied with its progress so far at a track many Formula 1 observers reckon favours Red Bull overall

Formula 1
Jul 30, 2021