“We don’t feel it’s necessary”– Mercedes boss Toto Wolff is coy over Lewis Hamilton’s fourth engine plans, which will incur a grid penalty.
Mercedes took a grid penalty to install a new engine on Valtteri Bottas’ new engine; meanwhile, there were also reports of Mercedes going with a new engine in Lewis Hamilton’s case.
That would have acquired him a grid penalty, considering it would have been his fourth engine of 2021. However, Mercedes is now backtracking from that plan keeping their world title interests at the front.
“No, it’s not an absolute must, because we are still running very comfortably with this power unit,” Wolff told media, including RacingNews365.com.
“It’s a decision that that can be made at any time, but at the moment, we don’t feel it’s necessary. Does that mean we’re not going to take a fourth? No, it doesn’t. I think we will see how the next races pan out.”
The fine margin between hero and zero
Wolff later talked about Hamilton ending behind the McLaren duo in the sprint race, which will make him start from the second row, and according to Wolff, it is quite unusual.
“First of all, the starts can happen. Between hero and zero on a start is such a fine margin,” said Wolff. “Having too much wheelspin happens, to be honest, and that bit us hard, but we still have everything to play [for].”
Meanwhile, he mightily praised his outgoing Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas who got three points for his team on Saturday by winning the sprint race, even though he would start the main race from the back of the grid.
— Valtteri Bottas (@ValtteriBottas) September 11, 2021
“Valtteri just had an unbelievable getaway and drove away into the sunset,” Wolff added. “[It was] one of the most dominant ways of winning a race, irrespective of whether it was a Sprint race or not – it was a real masterclass from Valtteri.”