Mercedes reviewing ‘design and procedures’ following Hamilton’s Headrest Issue


Lewis Hamilton lost a potential win in Azerbaijan thanks to a loose headrest - Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

The problematic headrest that cost Lewis Hamilton a near-certain victory in the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, and the procedures around it, have been reviewed ahead of this weekend’s Austrian Grand Prix, according to Toto Wolff.

Hamilton had led from the start at the Baku City Circuit, surviving three safety car periods and a red flag, but on the restart following the stoppage, the rear section of his headrest became loose, and the Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team racer was required to pit to have it replaced on safety grounds, which meant he could only finish down in fifth.

“Our focus since Baku has been on our own shortcomings, reviewing both the design and procedures around our headrest which cost Lewis the win two weeks ago,” said Wolff, the Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport.

Wolff feels that the team have been making good steps in understanding how their W08 works since their struggles in Monaco, with tyre warm-up taking the longest time to understand due to this year’s new technical regulations.

“We have made a step since Monaco in understanding what it takes to make our car perform,” said Wolff. “The sweet spot is still difficult to find – but we are starting to do so more regularly.

“Clearly, we are not the only team who took time to understand the combination of the new regulations and tyres – but we are making progress, step by step. And we must continue to do so in the next two weekends to maximise our points score.”