Ross Brawn Has a Theory Why Lewis Hamilton Dodged Turkish GP Pit-Stop Calls

Published 10/12/2021, 10:45 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Russian Grand Prix – Sochi Autodrom, Sochi, Russia – September 26, 2021 Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton after winning the race Pool via REUTERS/Yuri Kochetkov


The Mercedes pitstop at the Turkish GP continues to be a topic of discussion. The discrepancies over the timing of the pitstop and even the necessity for it were one of the few moments of drama in the race. Lewis Hamilton, although frustrated over team radio, also cleared the air regarding the reaction; he and the team will only take it as a learning experience. Ross Brawn provided his insights to the driver’s pitstop.

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The wet tracks at Intercity meant that strategies would weigh heavily on the race on Sunday. Explaining the dilemma in such situations, Brawn said, “In these scenarios, you’re trusting your judgment, experience, and feel. As we saw with Lewis, there was a fair bit of initial resistance from within the car about pitting. When these situations are not clear-cut and you get a push back from the driver, it’s easy for a team to back off what they feel was the right decision.”

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Brawn explained the need for the pitstop. For Mercedes, Wolff had clarified that another DNF would cause the championship to slip away from them. Having to choose between P5 or zero points made the decision clear. Brawn laid out the scenario, plain and simple.

“The driver is in a bubble. They need to give you information, but what they can’t see is all the data being fed to the pit wall. In Lewis’ case, if he didn’t box and the tires had gone away or there had been a light rain shower, he would have tumbled down the order and that would have been a disaster.”

While what could’ve been will remain unknown, Lewis‘ six-point gap is something the driver might make up for over the next few races.

Lewis Hamilton is fired up after Turkish GP

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The Mercedes pitstop at Turkey cost the team, but not as heavily as it could have if they didn’t. Team Principal Toto Wolff said, “I think again it was measured and obviously in the car, [Lewis] didn’t see how much he was dropping off in lap time and he didn’t see Leclerc dropping off, and it was clear that if he’d stayed out, he would have lost against Gasly in any case.”

Formula One F1 – Turkish Grand Prix – Intercity Istanbul Park, Istanbul, Turkey – October 10, 2021 Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton in action during the race REUTERS/Umit Bektas

Despite the initial frustrations at having lost what could have been a podium position, Hamilton made it known that there was nothing brewing between him and his team. “My heart and spirit are out there on the track, it’s the fire in me that’s got me this far but any angst is quickly forgotten and we talked it through, already looking ahead to the next race.”

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As of now, the championship is still anybody’s game. Although six rounds seem like a short time, the game changes hands in almost every race. Now, Verstappen has regained his position by six points; but he isn’t sitting on top comfortably. As everyone believes, it will be the final race in Abu Dhabi that will give us our 2021 F1 champion.

Watch this story: Biggest Pitlane Mishaps Featuring Hamilton, Raikkonen & Verstappen

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Shreya Sanjeev

447 articles

Shreya Sanjeev is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Having attained a journalism degree from St Xavier's College, she finds comfort in the sound of her keyboard while typing and excitement in the sound of F1 cars speeding on a track. A street circuit and Daniel Ricciardo fan through and through, Shreya claims the 2018 Monaco GP to be one of her favorite races of all time.

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