During the qualifying session for the F1 70th Anniversary GP, Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas locked out the front row. Later on in the press conference, the two spoke to Autosport about their strategy in Q3. As it happened, the two drivers ventured out on the soft tyres for a flying lap. After that, they switched to a set of mediums, so the question surrounded the reason behind the swap.
According to Hamilton, they made the decision as a team and realised that the medium tyres worked much better. This was why the duo chose to save them for a last gasp dash. Adding to his teammate’s wards, Bottas said that the soft tyres did not work well during Friday practice.
That explained why they saved those tyres for later, since the track rubbered up as the qualifying progressed. So they wanted to take capital advantage of that fact and turn things in their favour.
Even though Hamilton and Bottas locked out the front row, they know that this race will not be easy. Last weekend’s race was a clear indication of that because of the spectacular tyre blowouts. Even the Mercedes duo were not spared, and poor Bottas lost a surefire podium and ended up outside the points.
Meanwhile, Lewis Hamilton lucked out and barely managed to latch onto the win. Since he was on the final lap, Hamilton did not have the luxury of a pitstop and had to trundle around the track. All the while he prayed as Max Verstappen gobbled into his near 30-second lead. Somehow, he managed to cross the finish line ahead of the Dutchman, with a 6-second gap at the line.
It is safe to say, that Mercedes do not want to sweat again and will do anything to avoid tyre failures.