Mercedes’ Toto Wolff: “It was exciting to see our drivers fight hard on the track”

by Paul Hensby

Toto Wolff believed both Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas drove strongly and would have merited the victory at Silverstone, only for the intervention of the safety car to fall into the hands of the reigning World Champion.

The Mercedes AMG Motorsport team secured a seventh one-two finish of the season after being the class of the field, with the two drivers fighting for position on track, with team principal Wolff pleased the respect that Hamilton and Bottas have for each other was shown on track with the clean battle they had.

Wolff was also delighted to see Mercedes recover in a spectacular manner after their poor showing in the Austrian Grand Prix two weeks prior where neither Bottas nor Hamilton were a contender for the victory.

“To bounce back from our worst weekend of the season with a 1-2 at our home race is a great feeling,” insisted Wolff.  

“It was exciting to see our drivers fight hard on the track; it was a tough battle, but there’s a lot of respect between the two of them and they always left each other enough space.”

Wolff said Bottas had a strong weekend only for the safety car, needed to clear Antonio Giovinazzi’s stricken Alfa Romeo Racing car from the gravel trap, to deny him the opportunity to claim the victory as Hamilton, yet to pit, was able to jump his team-mate by making his first and only stop when the safety car was deployed.

“I think both our drivers merited to win today,” said Wolff.  “Valtteri had a really strong weekend; he outqualified Lewis at Silverstone, he led the race, he defended spectacularly, but the Safety Car came out in the wrong moment for him.

“Lewis was struggling a bit yesterday but drove a very strong race today and even managed to get the point for the fastest lap on 30 laps old Hard tyres; we’re still not quite sure how he managed that. It’s a great result for him in front of his home crowd.

“We’re now looking forward to our second home race in Hockenheim in two weeks.”

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