“That’s basically a KO”: Wolff left far from impressed after Bottas chose to ignore team order

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff has revealed that he will have a discussion with Valtteri Bottas about how he made it difficult for Lewis Hamilton to overtake him. This was in spite the fact that Bottas was told to do so on the team radio during the Spanish Grand Prix.

According to the message on the radio, Bottas was told not to make it difficult for Hamilton to overtake him as he fought Max Verstappen with a fresh set of tyres.

Bottas was reluctant initially but was soon. He explained after the race that he “could have let him by earlier”. However, he was focused on his own race. “I’m not here to let people by,” he said.

Wolff, however, saw things differently.

“Racing drivers, their instincts are what they are. We would have wished that maybe because Lewis was on a totally different strategy, he would have come through faster, but in the end, we scored the result,” he said.

“I can relate to Valtteri that he had a tough day again and you’re annoyed. If it would have lost us the race I would be more critical but in the end, this is something we can learn off.”

Bottas was not in a fight with Hamilton. Rather, he was trying to build a gap against fourth-place Charles Leclerc.

Wolff added, “It goes both directions, and this is what we will be discussing but in a very camaraderie sort of way.”

The team boss was also asked about the mental state of Bottas. He mentioned that he has nothing to worry about and that Bottas is in a good place.

“In the mental state I would say he is very strong and he is in a good place, he keeps scoring,” said Wolff. “In qualifying, it was three drivers within the tenths, the weekend before he was on pole, so his speed is enormous.

“It’s just when things go wrong at the start, or you’re in a gaggle of cars and you lose time to the leaders, that’s basically a KO.

“Behind Charles, I don’t know how much he lost, he will know better, 20 seconds or so, and then obviously it’s where you are, you’re third on the road at best.”

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