Mercedes deliberately slowed itself at Spa to do an experiment for the race at Monza, reported six to seven-tenths a lap down.
Mercedes once again dominated Spa, and their hegemony in Formula 1 doesn’t seem to stop in the near future. And now, it has been revealed that Mercedes deliberately slowed itself down during Belgian Grand Prix.
As per the Mercedes’ officials, it was a move to experiment ahead of Monza, as a new Technical Directctive comes into effect in Formula 1, the new directive will discontinue the usage of engine mode or aka as ‘Party Mode’.
“Only when Verstappen caught up to one and a half seconds on Valtteri on the 25th lap did we tell our guys [Hamilton and Bottas] that they could forget about tyre management for a few laps and get a little bit of a head start,” Mercedes chief race engineer Andrew Shovlin is quoted by Auto Motor und Sport.
“If you take more today, you will harm yourself tomorrow. We already had the races from Monza in mind and wanted to bring the engines as fresh as possible into the new era. Every hot lap would have cost us more later.”
The data states that if Mercedes had used the party mode at Spa, the gap between Verstappen and other two cars would have been even greater for the pole position.
Mercedes stronger without Party mode?
Despite Hamilton’s disagreement over revocation of party mode in the initial days. Mercedes have openly claimed that the ban might help their cause further, with a better life to engines.
As of now, it is not sure whether it will slow them down or not, but it is pretty clear that all the teams are losing the same leverage and despite Mercedes slowing itself down, the deficit is still observable.