Mercedes: Ferrari F1 first lap clashes 'deliberate or incompetence'

Mercedes has suggested Ferrari's opening lap collisions with its drivers are either "deliberate or incompetence" after Lewis Hamilton was spun around by Kimi Raikkonen at the British Grand Prix

Mercedes: Ferrari F1 first lap clashes 'deliberate or incompetence'

Just two races on from Valtteri Bottas being taken out in France by Sebastian Vettel at the first corner, Raikkonen made a mistake at Silverstone and clouted Hamilton at Village - earning a 10-second penalty.

Although Hamilton recovered to finish second, Wolff was far from happy about seeing his team facing a fightback again through no fault of its own.

Asked by Sky Sports for his view on the incident, Mercedes boss Toto Wolff said: "A racing incident. Unfortunate because Le Castellet first time we got taken out and now it is the second time we got taken out.

Raikkonen: I deserved penalty for Hamilton clash

"It is a lot of constructors' [championship] points. In [technical director] James Allison's words, 'do you think it is deliberate or incompetence?', so this leaves us with a judgement."

Wolff's questions about Ferrari came after Hamilton also dropped a hint that there could be more behind the first corner clashes.

"Our team did an amazing job this weekend, we have so much support and so much pressure for us all," he said.

"Interesting tactics I would say from their side, but we will do what we can to fight them and improve in the next races."

Although frustrated by the first period of the race, Wolff said Mercedes did the right thing in not pitting during the first safety car period, even though it left Valtteri Bottas exposed in the lead as other drivers took fresh tyres.

"I think it worked because we gained track position," he said. "At the end we had a two and four, and that was better than where we were running before.

"It was absolutely the right call. Nevertheless we knew it was going to be very difficult in the end."

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Series Formula 1
Teams Ferrari , Mercedes
Author Jonathan Noble
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