Bottas: Tyres will be ‘an issue for everyone’ for Silverstone 2
Valtteri Bottas warns that more tyre drama may lie ahead next week at Silverstone after the issues that impacted Mercedes in the final laps of Sunday’s British Grand Prix.
Bottas was on track to finish second behind his untouchable teammate Lewis Hamilton when the Finn was the victim of a sudden tyre delamination with four laps to go.
The Mercedes driver pitted but could not salvage a top-ten position, while Hamilton miraculously held on to the win despite suffering a similar tyre destruction on the ultimate lap, an incident that also marred the end of Carlos Sainz’s race.
Hamilton clings on for victory amid last lap tyre drama
Two early safety car periods had led the Mercedes camp to opt for a long stint on the hard compound tyre, and that choice perhaps led in the end to excessive wear and stress.
“Of course, really disappointing and very unlucky,” a despondent Bottas said after the race. “I was aware I got a puncture so I had to go around the whole lap. So not ideal.”
“We knew it was going to be a long stint with the hard tyre. Of course I was trying to put pressure on Lewis.
“But towards the end I was starting to get more and more vibration. I reported that and then at the end I had in my mind that who knows, there could be an issue. So of course, I started to manage a bit.
“But it just happened like this, so sudden, I couldn’t really predict it happening. Not much more to say really.”
To spice up the show, Pirelli planned on supplying a softer selection of tyres for next week’s 70th Anniversary Grand Prix. It’s uncertain whether F1’s supplier will change its plans in light of today’s incidents and after conducting a forensic analysis of the failed tyres.
If not, Bottas is predicting more trouble ahead, or a two-stop race.
“It’s going to be an issue for everyone,” he said. “For sure one stop is not going to happen with the compounds we have next week.
“So I’m sure there still will be lots of things learned from this weekend. But just need to move on, I guess.”
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