KEY POINTS

  • Bottas has slammed Mercedes for poor strategy during British GP
  • He finished third, behind Verstappen and Hamilton
  • Bottas now has fallen to No. 3 in the drivers' standings

An irked Valletri Bottas slammed Mercedes' strategy as he said "as a team, we were sleeping" after Red Bulls’ Max Verstappen secured victory at the British Grand Prix on Sunday, Aug. 9.

Bottas, who started the race on pole, slipped to P3, behind Verstappen and Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton.

The Fin comprehensively led Hamilton at the start and maintained it when he made his first pit stop on lap 13. He swapped medium tires for hards and remained well ahead of the defending champion. When Bottas made his second pit stop on lap 32, Hamilton was scheduled to return to the pit for the second time the following lap. However, the Brit assumed he would reach the chequered flag with a second stop but ended up making the stop on lap 41.

Even though Hamilton finished ahead of Bottas, the strategy eventually saw both the Mercedes drivers lose to Verstappen.

Opening win: Mercedes' driver Valtteri Bottas after his victory last weekend Opening win: Mercedes' driver Valtteri Bottas after his victory last weekend Photo: POOL / Mark Thompson

Bottas, who fell to third place in the drivers’ standings after the British Grand Prix, massively criticized Mercedes’ strategy in a post-race interview.

"Very frustrating, obviously, starting from pole and finishing third is not ideal. I think as a team we were sleeping at some point when Max managed to get ahead of us, and my strategy was far, far from ideal so, lots to learn from today I think. The middle stint was quite short - we boxed and I could see Max came in at the same time, so then I knew it was going to be tricky," said Bottas.

Explaining further where he lost his position to Hamilton, Bottas added," Towards the end of the last stint I tried to push flat-out to create opportunities. I was maybe catching slightly but then the tires gave up completely. For me, definitely I should have gone long in the second stint. The last stint was way too long and that’s when I lost the position to Lewis. We’ll move on, of course, disappointing day – move on."

The next race is scheduled to take place next Sunday, Aug. 16, at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.