Toto Wolff says he was not pleased at how easily Max Verstappen overtook both Mercedes cars on the first lap at the Mexican GP.
Mercedes started the race with both their cars on the front row. However, it was Red Bull’s Verstappen who took the lead into turn one. Using Bottas’ slipstream, the Dutchman took the outside line and comfortably went ahead of both W12s.
Wolff feels that his drivers could have done better to defend their positions. He was especially critical of Bottas who he felt was ‘not aggressive enough’. “That should not happen,” Wolff said. “I think we had two cars in front and seemed to open up the seal for Max to come around the outside.”
Soon after losing places to Max and teammate Lewis Hamilton, the Finnish driver made contact with the McLaren of Daniel Ricciardo and spun. He then had to pit for new tires which sent him to the back and he never made up enough places to finish in the top 10.
“The spin afterwards and a complete loss of points with Valtteri’s car. When that could have been a third or fourth place, is annoying to say the least,” the Austrian added.
No points in Mexico 🇲🇽🏁
Disappointing race today. Got hit in 1st corner and even if I tried it all I could not make it back to the points today. Just not my day.
— Valtteri Bottas (@ValtteriBottas) November 8, 2021
Mercedes would not have won even if they kept the lead, says Toto Wolff
Toto Wolff praised Red Bull’s car performance after the race. He acknowledged that they were too quick and it would be impossible to defend themselves even if they kept the lead after lap 1.
“You have to congratulate Red Bull because the pace was just on another level. I don’t think we could have won the race, even if we would have stayed ahead in the first corner because they could have driven circles around us, around the pit stops.
“So at the end, I think for Lewis’ championship, it was damage limitation. As for the constructors, Valtteri spinning out turn one was just very painful.”
Red Bull’s pace looked even better than it did in practice according to Wolff
“I don’t know what they did wrong yesterday in qualifying and what went towards us, but that is the pace we’ve seen on Friday,” he said after the race. “It’s worse than we had hoped. But you have to take it on the chin.”
Tus pilotos favoritos. pic.twitter.com/E8NJyJ9ndz
— Red Bull México (@redbullMEX) November 7, 2021
Verstappen winning in Mexico means that the 24 year old now has a 19 point lead over Hamilton with just 4 races to go. On the other hand, Red Bull are now only 1 point behind in the Constructor’s Standings.