Mercedes F1 team reveals cause of Hungarian GP radio meltdown

Mercedes has revealed that a cracked fibre optic cable was the cause of the Formula 1 radio problems it suffered during the Hungarian Grand Prix

Mercedes F1 team reveals cause of Hungarian GP radio meltdown

Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas's efforts at the Hungaroring were compromised when Mercedes lost much of its communications and data systems, hindering its ability to capitalise on Ferrari's difficulties as the race developed.

Asked if the team had got to the bottom of what happened on the pit wall, Mercedes boss Toto Wolff said: "It was a local hardware issue. We found a crack in a fibre optic cable, that made us fly blind.

"Our whole comms and data systems broke down. We didn't have any communications on the 'Fantasy Island' - that is the middle thing we have - and on the pit wall.

"So no radio comms, no data, no TV feed. We somehow managed to get it back occasionally - and that obviously penalised us strongly.

"So there were conversations at times that Lewis heard and then there were conversations he didn't hear. A difficult one."

Wolff praised the efforts of those helping away from the track to keep its pit wall as up-to-date as possible with what was going on.

"It was an incredible team play," he said. "We had lots of people in Brackley and in Brixworth who were our redundancy systems, feeding us massive amounts of information over to us on the radio.

"At times there were six or seven different people speaking to James [Vowles, Mercedes strategist] and we were trying to make the right decisions. That was a really great team effort."

Hamilton suggested that without the communication problems he could have delayed his pitstop and swapped places with Bottas sooner, which Wolff agreed with.

"We could have had it a couple of laps earlier because he [Hamilton] told us he could have gone much quicker," he said.

"He even said his tyres were in good shape the first set, and we could have tried to leave him out.

"That could have had a potentially massive outcome on the race as we were so close to the Ferraris in the end. But if and whens don't win you races."

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