“Engine went in protection mode”: Wolff explains power issue that cost Bottas five seconds

Valtteri Bottas managed to redeem his performance after a disaster of a race in Imola. He managed to take pole and lead the opening stages of the race in Portimao. But, he slipped to third after being overtaken by Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen.

Bottas was almost able to catch up to Verstappen after his hard tyres reached their optimum temperature following his pit stop. However, he faced a loss of power which destroyed any such thoughts.

Over the course of two laps, the Finn ended up lagging by five seconds behind Verstappen before he was able to get the issue resolved. Unfortunately, it was then too late to try and make up the lost time.

“That was unfortunate, because he really caught up well to Max, and then it kind of stabilised at 1.5, 1.6 seconds, but he had more to come at the end of the race,” Wolff told Sky Sports.

“We made a switch change, in order to basically override a sensor that was saying we are running too hot on exhaust temperatures, and we couldn’t override it.

“So the engine went in protection mode and cost him five seconds.”

Wolff also had words of encouragement for Bottas during the race and believes that he recovered well after his crash with George Russell in Imola.

“He will be on top form and he was yesterday,” Wolff said. “You can see where he came from at Imola, that was a write-off weekend and he’s put it on pole and had a very solid race.

“It’s clear that when you are in the front and just kicking a hole in the air, and the car behind you has DRS, that’s very difficult.

“At that moment, Lewis opened up a little bit of a gap, and was gone. But he controlled Max well. We lost the undercut, that was unfortunate, and then we let him down with the engine, that went into a safety mode.

“So all in all, I think like many times, it could have worked for Valtteri. We were pushing hard and continue to support him, and next time we’ll see what he’s capable of doing in Barcelona,” he concluded.

Do you think Bottas will be able to bring back his form? Let us know in the comments below!

Read More: “I maybe need to shut up next time”: Wolff takes the blame for ineffective radio chat with Bottas

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