The Finn came into the pits for a routine stop during the race, but his team were unable to remove his front right wheel which ultimately led him to retire.
It was a very uncomfortable moment to watch as the mechanics were trying their best to remove the wheel but failing at it.
Setback for Mercedes as Red Bull takes lead
This was a major setback for the Brackley-based team as Red Bull overtook them in the constructors’ world championship.
“The gun made the wheel nut completely round,” team boss Toto Wolff said.
“I’ve never seen anything like it. There’s nothing left of it.
“Valtteri told us he could see the metal shavings fly up.
“The tyre is still on the car now,” the Austrian added.
Ferrari offered to help out: Wolff
Wolff also revealed that ‘Ferrari helped us with heavy equipment; like a sledgehammer after the race but failed. The team will now attempt to remove the wheel once the car is back at the factory.
“We have to see whether this is a design error of a failure of several systems,” Wolff said.
“It has nothing to do with the mechanic,” he insisted. “He is actually one of the best and fittest on the team when it comes to pitstop speed.”
Bottas partially responsible for fiasco
Wolff also claimed that Bottas’ angle of approach into the pit area could be a contributing factor for the disaster.
“Normally the mechanic doesn’t have to be so precise, but the angle was wrong,” said Wolff.
Bottas concluded: “It’s incredibly disappointing and a situation that must never occur again. It’s a big mistake.”
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