Toto Wolff was clearly delighted at the end of the 2021 Bahrain Grand Prix, more animated than he usually would be after a race victory as Hamilton’s was anything but a ‘routine victory.’
Good strategy and excellent driving from the reigning world-champion allowed the German team to take victory with Lewis Hamilton for the third successive year.
If someone had told Wolff that they would have both cars on the podium they wouldn’t have believed it. The Austrian Team-Principal does admit that they are still lacking pace in qualifying but were more than competitive in the race where the points are scored.
“If somebody had predicted this would be the result on Sunday, I wouldn’t have believed it. If you are 100% honest with yourself, we are still lacking pace in qualifying. Today we were definitely competitive, and the strategy made all the difference.”
Bringing in Hamilton early was a brave call but Mercedes will be counting their lucky stars that Hamilton managed to hold off a charging Max Verstappen.
This is a circuit which in the past Red Bull have been weak at and the team-based in Milton-Keynes have always tended to develop the car well throughout the year so Wolff acknowledges that they will be extremely difficult to beat in 2021.
Similar to every fan, Wolff is excited to see both Red Bull and Mercedes battle it out for the bragging rights, come the end of the season.
“We made a bold call in the beginning to take track position and the lead of the race, then at the end the racing gods were on our side. Bahrain was never the strongest race for Red Bull and they have never traditionally been the quickest out the blocks, so after today I have no doubt that they are going to be extremely difficult to beat in 2021.
“We have a real fight on our hands – and we’re all excited about the prospect of a really close battle for these championships!”