Bottas: Leclerc's Hungarian GP lap one move completely unnecessary

Valtteri Bottas says the opening-lap move by Charles Leclerc that damaged the front wing of his Mercedes Formula 1 car in the Hungarian Grand Prix was "completely unnecessary"

Bottas: Leclerc's Hungarian GP lap one move completely unnecessary

Bottas started second but was passed by Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton around the outside of Turn 2 and into Turn 3, a move that compromised Bottas and allowed Leclerc to close in.

He suffered a damaged right endplate after Leclerc's Ferrari clipped him as he passed Bottas for third.

Bottas stayed out in the opening laps but was forced to pit for a new front wing at the end of lap five, which dropped him to the rear of the field.

"I was on the outside of Verstappen, so I tried to brake late, tried to go for the outside," said Bottas, who recovered to eighth, describing his start.

"He braked late as well, so I had a bit of a lock-up, so that caused a bit of a flatspot, so going into Turn 2 I had some understeer because of that.

"But it was all OK. Lewis was also on the outside, but there was still room for two of us, maybe [I] left a bit too much because he could carry good speed into Turn 3.

"We were side-by-side, for sure he didn't leave any room for me, so that compromised my exit out of Turn 3, I had to lift.

"Then on the way to Turn 4 Charles came on the right-hand side and suddenly swept across, and took my front wing.

"So that was it really, it compromised the race - losing big chunks of time in the beginning, then [I] stopped early, going through traffic all through the race, that was really the story."

Bottas said he initially thought he might have been at fault, but changed his mind on reviewing replays after the race.

"At the time when it happened I thought I was just focussed on something else, and maybe didn't see him, but it happened pretty quick," he added.

"But then when I saw the onboard, and when I saw Vettel's onboard, it was clear that I was just going straight ahead, he was on the right, and he would have been ahead of me anyway before Turn 4 going straight.

"But then suddenly he swept across and for me it was too late to react. I love hard racing, that's for sure, but that was completely unnecessary, and for sure compromised my race.

"He was lucky enough not to get a puncture. That's not how it should be."

Leclerc said he was not really aware of the contact.

"I don't really know to be honest," said Leclerc, when asked about the incident.

"I felt a small touch but I don't really know what happened. I have no idea, I haven't seen it."

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