More Engines & F1 Penalties in the Pipeline for Lewis Hamilton? Wolff Gives Major Hint

Published 10/13/2021, 2:51 PM EDT
Formula One F1 – Turkish Grand Prix – Intercity Istanbul Park, Istanbul, Turkey – October 10, 2021 Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton after finishing the race in fifth place REUTERS/Umit Bektas


Ahead of the Turkish Grand Prix, Mercedes announced that Lewis Hamilton will serve a ten-place grid penalty for changing the internal combustion system of his power unit.

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And the Briton had a day to forget at Istanbul Park. Despite securing pole position, Hamilton started the race just outside the top 10. However, the Mercedes driver who was running strong at P3 in the closing stages of the race dropped to fifth after a poor pit stop strategy denied him the podium.

Meanwhile, the Mercedes team principal, Toto Wolff, is not ruling out another engine penalty for the Briton before the end of the season.

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What did Toto Wolff say?

Mercedes are struggling with their power unit more often than ever this season. Valtteri Bottas has already taken his fifth engine at the Russian GP and Lewis Hamilton is driving his fourth.

Meanwhile, as quoted by GP Blog, when asked about Lewis Hamilton’s fourth engine after the Turkish GP, Toto Wolff said: “We saw some data on the combustion engine that didn’t look promising and a failure is a total killer for the championship.”

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIa: Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP and Mercedes GP Executive Director Toto Wolff on stage for the F1 Live event during previews ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Australia at Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit on March 13, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)

“This one may last until the end of the season, but there may come a time when we say it’s worth taking a new one because the other one is still in danger. We’ll have to look at that in the coming races,” concluded the Mercedes boss.

Lewis Hamilton would fall far back if he didn’t make a pit stop: Mercedes trackside engineer

With every other driver around him was pitting for a new set of intermediates, Mercedes, too, asked the Briton to pit. However, Hamilton was in favor of going long and wanted to complete the race on the same tires.

Little did he know, the Briton was losing around 1.5 seconds with each lap and could’ve easily been overtaken by Charles Leclerc and Sergio Perez.

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Meanwhile, as quoted by Motorsport.com, when asked about the poor stop strategy at the Turkish GP, Mercedes trackside engineering director Andrew Shovlin replied: “If the tires stabilized at the moment, we brought him in and remained consistent until the finish, we would have lost the spot to Sergio (Perez), but would have stayed ahead of Charles (Leclerc) on P4.”

Formula One F1 – Turkish Grand Prix – Intercity Istanbul Park, Istanbul, Turkey – October 10, 2021. Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton in action with Red Bull’s Sergio Perez during the race REUTERS/Murad Sezer.

“He [Esteban Ocon] was the only one to finish the race on one set of inters. If we apply that degradation to Lewis, he would lose a lot of places, up to the back of the points,” concluded the Mercedes engineer. (Translated via Google Translate)

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Pingaksh Sharma

300 articles

Pingaksh Sharma is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. He has been following this sport since India hosted the Grand Prix in 2012 and has been an ardent supporter of the eventual race winner, Sebastian Vettel. He is also a fan of Max Verstappen and Red Bull, and hopes the former breaks Lewis Hamilton's dominance.

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