Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Monte-Carlo, 2015

‘Are you sure it’s best to stay out?’ Radio call which cost Hamilton victory revealed

2015 Monaco Grand Prix

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Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Monte-Carlo, 2015The radio message which cost Lewis Hamilton a likely victory in the Monaco Grand Prix has been revealed for the first time.

Hamilton was leading the Monaco Grand Prix when a pit stop during a Safety Car period at the end of the race handed victory to his team mate Nico Rosberg.

As Hamilton admitted afterwards, his team had originally said he should stay out but he queries the call and was concerned his rivals would take the opportunity to switch to super-soft tyres.

The decision was then taken for Hamilton to pit, as Mercedes incorrectly believed he would be able to do so and remain in the lead.

The pivotal radio message was not broadcast during the race, but can be heard in the edited highlights of the Monaco Grand Prix video on the official Formula One website. It includes the following exchange between Hamilton and race engineer Peter Bonnington:

FromToMessage
Peter BonningtonLewis HamiltonSafety Car, Safety Car. So we are staying out.
Lewis HamiltonPeter BonningtonAre you sure it’s the best thing to stay out? These tyres have lost all their temperature. Everyone’s going to be on [super-softs] now.
Peter BonningtonLewis HamiltonOK. Copy, copy. Box, box.

After the race Mercedes executive director Toto Wolff said “I’m sorry for Lewis that we made the mistake and I’m sorry for Lewis”. He described the decision as “a misjudgement in the heat of the moment”.

Other radio messages which were not broadcast during the race which can be heard in the video include Daniel Ricciardo saying “get out of my way” as he passed Kimi Raikkonen, in a move the Ferrari driver claimed deserved a penalty.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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166 comments on “‘Are you sure it’s best to stay out?’ Radio call which cost Hamilton victory revealed”

  1. So basically Mercedes screwed up. Even with him querying if it was a good idea, it was for them to tell him yes because they weren’t going to pit Nico.

    They had a similar situation to this in Singapore last year. Lewis was concerned that the tyres would not be able to last the stint, but they told him to stay out all the same. I’m just wondering if the loss of Jock Clear is having an effect on his side of the garage?

    1. Is Lewis to blame for the mistake? Not much, but perhaps partly. Did Mercedes screw up? Well yes, but I can easily understand why.

      After Lewis’ post-race interview, we know that Lewis said “everyone’s going to be on [super-softs]”, because he was checking the big screens, saw that Mercedes pit crew was out and thought that was because they were going to pit Nico.

      But Bonnington couldn’t know that. What he heard was “these tyres have lost all their temperature” and then “everyone’s going to be on [super-softs]”. I think that in that moment, it was very reasonable for Bonnington to think that Lewis was assuming everyone to pit, because the tyres were losing all their temperature. In fact, I think that was a much more reasonable conclusion than realising that Lewis was checking the big screens and making his own conclusions from what he was seeing on them.

      Should Bonnington have asked for more information? Yes, but there probably wasn’t any time. Mercedes still thought that Lewis had a gap big enough to pit and maintain position, but Rosberg and Vettel were catching Hamilton rapidly. They had to pit him immediately if they were going to do that at all.

      So all in all, I think this was a result of bad communication and even worse luck. Both Hamilton and Mercedes should improve their communication, but I don’t think neither should be entirely blamed for this mistake.

      1. I agree with you mostly. Also it is really interesting that when it was announced Jock Clear would be leaving most people said it would have little to no effect on Hamilton-Mercedes. But after a couple of races where Hamilton had been questioning the decisions by the pit wall, we started to hear people mentioning Jock Clear again. Though I think Hamilton-pit wall communication has always been a bit dodgy to say the least.

    2. Two thoughts on the radio exchange: Lewis frequently challenges / questions decisions from the pit wall as it is referred to AND the pit wall, even though they have an untold amount of info, maybe too much to digest real time, must rely on their driver as only he really knows how the car FEELS at that moment. This plus missing the pit turn off definitely makes decision time a critical few seconds, due to adding a lap takes a minute plus or much more behind a safety car………… Thanks, Norris

    3. Mercedes only have ONE strategy team, so they were also monitoring Nico, they must have known that Nico was not pitting!! So why bring the race leader into the pits and risk everything. These decisions are what they are paid for, they should have advised Lewis to stay out.

      1. They DID advise Lewis to stay out! You want to argue fine, have it your way, chief.

    4. Exactly.

      This radio message also puts to bed that the suggested Hamilton simply demanded to pit. It’s obvious now that he only asked to rethink the strategy in case Rosberg and/or Vettel were going for supersofts.

      1. Not quite @patrickl

        HAM actually questioned the initial order of the team to stay on track (actual team’s message: “Safety Car, Safety Car… And WE ARE STAYING OUT”). Also, you can easily tell by the tone of Hamilton’s voice that it wasn’t just a simple doubt, but actually a *dispute* of what the team has ordered him to do in the first place.

        1. Yes quite:

          Everyone’s going to be on [super-softs] now.

          Which wasn’t true and Mercedes knew this.

          1. “Which wasn’t true and Mercedes knew this.”

            Well, you’re just *assuming* that (which is exactly what Hamilton did and cost him the win in Monaco).

            Or maybe you’re forgetting Mercedes runs actually two separated teams within the main one ? I mean, Nico and Lewis do not have the same race engineers (ROS Tony Ross | LH Peter Bonnington) and performance engineers so it’s fair to say they’re also not sharing the tyre schedule/strategy for each driver, especially when everything’s still open regarding the WDC (let alone the strategies from others drivers and teams).

            Being that the case and in such a short time frame it was impossible for Hamilton’s side of the garage to guess what Rosberg’s side of it (and Vettel’s team) would do. Because if they knew or were so sure of it, a simple “Nico and Sebastian are staying out” call from Bonnington to Lewis over the radio would have avoided all this mess.

  2. Well guess conspiracy theories will now have to look for another subject to talk about.

    And I did agree with Kimi that Daniel deserved a penalty, but I won´t judge him on the radio message as it was made on the heat of the moment. Is the same as when a driver does a “finger salute” or call someone a “cucumber”

    1. There will always be the fans which confronted with the evidence will say: “don’t confuse me with the facts”.

      1. pxcmerc (@)
        29th May 2015, 2:42

        “Everyone’s going to be on [super-softs] now.”

        I know, right…. Some times the obvious is hard to see.

    2. It is very ridiculous for anyone to think there was a conspriracy or anything of that sort. What happened last Sunday was a mega blunder and that’s it.

      Concerning the radio conversation, if there is one thing the release has clarified, it is that Lewis Hamilton is without any single blame for the incident.

      His statement ‘everyone will be on super softs’ is so untrue and wrong that he should have been corrected immediately that even Nico, his closest rival was not even going to be brought in.

      I guess, Peter Bonington reacted too quickly on the spur of the moment without looking well at the data he had available.

      Bad call is just what it was.

      1. You expect that Mercedes team will correct The Best Driver in the World who knows everything just by taking a glimpse on a TV screen?

      2. Just out of interest, who are these people talking up a conspiracy because I haven’t seen anyone mention it? I think almost 100% of people understand this was simply a mistake.

        1. Don’t confuse the people who take the time to read all the postings on F1fanatic with the average “fan”. LOL Most of us on here were laughing at the idea of a conspiracy. We may have argued as to who was more at fault and what should be done about it. But few of us thought it was an actual conspiracy rather than a really bad blunder.

          But if you read other social media and watch the nutty fans attacking Toto during his Q&A, you’ll see that there were plenty of conspiracy theorists out there. And yes…there were a few on here as well. :(

          It was a very bad call. End of story.

  3. Did Dan say “get out of my way” Kimi style?

    1. Only Kimi talk Kimi style….. others are just an imittation

  4. Anton Barbieri
    28th May 2015, 23:45

    What I gather from that conversation… Hamilton basically screwed himself over… So much for all of his idiot fans crying ‘sabotage’ and laying the blame at Mercedes, it’s more a 50/50 situation.

    1. Again who are these people? Most Hamilton fans such as myself do have a shred of common sense from time to time.

      1. Try Googling Mercedes Conspiracy F1. Lots of stories out there mentioning it.

        Not sure why my previous post was removed. I Had a post with a number of links to articles mentioning the conspiracy theory.

        1. Oh.. Hmm… Forgot the world was a crazy place!

        2. Someone is conspiring against you.

    2. I’d argue that Merc’s pit crew should have informed Hamilton what was going on with Rosberg before making that decision. I’d argue with that with information available Mercedes should take the lions share of the blame.

      Of course it is my opinion that Mercedes should take the lions share of the credit for Hamilton’s 2nd place in the Spanish GP but most of the credit went to Hamilton anyway. It is funny how quickly fans forget.

      1. Are you forgetting the Merc team gave Lewis a slow stop when executing a simple undercut in a much faster car in Barcelona?
        Granted they (rightly) switched to a three stop stategy soon after but had they got that first stop right Lewis would have passed Vettel in the pits (at the first stop) and put some pressure on Nico much earlier in the race.

        1. You are assuming of course…

        2. @Mstanfield

          Are you forgetting that Mercedes gave Lewis a WDC winning car last year and most probably this year and 100 million pounds?

  5. So Lewis intimated the others had pitted to super softs and the team didn’t pick up on what he was saying. A simple nico and Seb are still out would have clarified any confusion.
    The team failed Lewis.

    1. And that’s the mistake. Lewis was concerned the others were pitting, and probably should have given they were behind and needed something to give them an edge.

      But in the defense of the team, the other two had not passed the pit entry yet and teams in the pit wall at Monaco can’t quickly see who has a pit crew ready. Not in a matter of a second, anyway. So they didn’t know on the wall if Ferrari were out.

      1. but they will have known if nico was pitting.also im pretty sure both nico and seb also told their teams,their tyres were losing temp.so lewis was asking if the gap was big enough to pit.which is why he asked if is ok to pit.

    2. ColdFly F1 (@)
      29th May 2015, 7:04

      Mercedes has answered that one already – read this

    3. Spot-on, Chris. This is where tech appears to have overridden logic and presence of mind. A simple “Nico not stopping” would have calmed Lewis down. We can be fairly certain telemetry did not raise any alarms unseen from Lewis’ cockpit as this would have triggered a strong suggestion from the pit wall. Computer said “Yes” in answer to the wrong question. The question at the pit wall ought to have been should we rather than could we.

      1. i am pretty sure they were worried about ferrari, they even said it themselves, so telling lewis nico is not pitting would not change things, telling him vettel is not pitting that might have worked.

        1. Which they wouldn’t know 100%.

        2. Chris Phillips
          29th May 2015, 19:16

          Lewis only said what he said as he thought nice & den had pitted. Lewis would have stayed out if he knew none of the other front runners had already stopped. His concern was they where at that point on super softs which was not the case.
          Also maybe Ferrari decided to stay out as they assumed nico was pitting?

  6. Michael Brown
    29th May 2015, 0:24

    “I’m sorry for Lewis that we made the mistake and I’m sorry for Lewis”

    Department of Redundancy Department

    1. He no doubt had a target to achieve.

      1. Well that’s how Toto sounded like anyways…

  7. Ridiculous job from Mercedes. Simple thing to say was, no one will be on the supersofts. Which was obvious since they weren’t planning to pit Rosberg.
    But obviously they didn’t comprehend right away what Lewis said and made the mistake.
    Again, ridiculous, one of the most absurd pit calls on F1.

    1. pxcmerc (@)
      29th May 2015, 7:38

      Bonnington isn’t worth his salt, and people are crying conspiracy when the real issue is incompetence. Lewis has lost three races this season due to bad pits (Barcelona), poor preparation (Malaysia) and a bad call from his race engineer (Monaco).

      1. You can’t pick isolated events, nobody’s perfect. I suspect being Hamilton’s race engineer is not the easiest job, and their success in 2014 suggests Bonington is worth at least some salt.

      2. Initially, Bonnington made the correct call only to be immediately questioned by Hamilton. How in “god’s” name can this be Bonnington’s fault? If Hamilton had any brains and any confidence in his own abilities as a race driver, he would have realised that with the crash on lap 63 and the safety car out on 68 (wasn’t it) of a 78-lap race, there would only be a handful of laps to defend and stayed out.

        Another point – would Bonnington really have known exactly what Nico AND Seb would be doing at every given moment of the race? Especially in that very rapidly developing crisis? He’s not omniscient and you cannot blame him for not being so!

        Lewis lost Lewis the race, he should not have questioned Bonnington’s judgement. End of.

        1. On point…am abig fan but he messesd

        2. bonnington doesn’t make the call , he isn’t the strategist ; the strategy team made the wrong call , full stop ; they knew hamilton wanted to stop because he thought the others would , why didn’t they tell him ?

    2. but many did pit for tyres, like ricciardo, and ricciardo showed you can catch up and pass on those, it is only that rosberg and vettel did not pit.

      1. Yes, but Lewis pitted, had the best car in the field, fresh options (super softs) and failed to pass a Ferrari, something Ricciardo in a RB-11 managed to do…

        1. Chris Phillips
          29th May 2015, 19:25

          Ric had nothing to loose hence bumping Kimi off.
          Lewis on the other hand has an opportunity at being WDC so long as he scores as many points as possible which means crossing that line in 1st, 3rd or 10th, Ric is after any points he can get.

  8. RIC deserved a penalty more than Alonso if we look closely to all the replays out there! Alonso lost the rear of the car (not really his fault, more tires temperature), Ricciardo touched the rear wheel of Kimi (they weren’t side by side), sending him straight!
    There’s one view in particular, when you can see them coming down casino square, where it’s visible the action. RIC had enough space (at least 1m more until hit the barrier), but he had no line to take Mirabeau.. so he took the only option to make the move from that far, but not a good one in my opinion!

    1. “not a *fair one in my opinion!”

    2. I’d rather no one got a penalty. I think the most important thing is the fact that it was at Monaco, yes if that happened at Bahrain Kimi wouldn’t have been as disadvantaged, but I think as long as it wasn’t dangerous (there was no apparent malice) then the pass should stand. It was what many people want to see, a hard fought overtake, and it doesn’t reflect well on the stewards of a driver is penalised for attempting a brave and exciting overtake.

      1. I certainly don’t want to see a track full of Crasdonados or Mk1 Grosjeans but I do want to see more Ricciardos having a go, penalty was probably a possibility but Kimi fortunately was not really disadvantaged.

        1. Ricciardo was very luck that it was Raikkonen he bumped into because someone else probably would have lost control. He seriously seriously shoved the car ahead of him in a dangerous manner. Kimi has a very light and precise touch. You cannot say that he was not at disadvantage! Did you really see how Kimi lost the car there for a moment??

          1. yes, but he only lost the 1 place to RIC.

          2. @hohum

            So? What’s that got to do with the nature of the maneuver?

          3. @sorry @hohum., but the consequence should not come into whether it was questionable driving or not.

            Its a longstanding debate on F1F. Personally. The consequence should nor affect the judgement IMO

      2. But drivers are not told beforehand how lenient the stewards are gonna be. Kimi in this case is at a huge disadvantage because of his experience with Monaco! If he thought he could have gotten away with it, maybe he would have tried a similar move on Ricciardo before the pits.

        1. But we’re comparing it to the Alonso incident. In that context, I think Kimi has every reason to feel aggrieved.

          1. Yeah but Kimi didn’t even know Alonso was punished for a similar move. I’m talking about what he would have thought at the time Ricc was coming onto him.

    3. “Alonso lost the rear of the car (not really his fault, more tires temperature)”
      I get what you are saying. But actually, I think he should have the awareness and should not push the car to the point that he lost control. Hulkenberg left him space but Alonso for a moment there lost the control, hence the crash. Similarly Ricciardo pushed Raikkonen and Kimi lost control of his car, but since Ricc was the one diving inside and the one pushing he should have gotten the penalty. His front wheel was barely aligned with Raikkonen’s rear tyres anyway. Look at the start. Sebastian Vettel was maybe the best starter at the ahead of the grid. He seemed like he was going to end up in front of Rosberg, but just for a millisecond there he lost the control and backed off. I think losing control of the car is maybe the most dangerous thing and you shouldn’t be pushing past that point.

      1. About Alonso touch, yeah for sure and I agree with you in general! But if we compare the two, I would give a penalty faster to RIC than to Alonso… that’s what I was trying to say with my comment. Just because RIC’s one was more deliberately!

        1. I agree with you. Not exactly because it was deliberate. Especially in Monaco you might touch to get pass, but because he did it in such a forcible and dangerous manner. He was really lucky Raikkonen didn’t lose it completely or regained control.

          When you watch overtaking maneuvers in general, and they get so close and maybe even touch, you get the sense that they are on the limits but they still know what they are doing and at least both of them are aware of what’s going on and even if one of them lost it the other guy is ready for it. When it’s not like that, there is almost always a penalty.

          1. Completely agree! And…

            but they still know what they are doing and at least both of them are aware of what’s going on

            The real reason behind RIC deserving a penalty! Kimi wasn’t completely aware because RIC was so behind, he never expected him to launch and try the overtake. And that touch on the rear wheel Kimi couldn’t really do anything against it.

    4. i think alonso did not deserve a penalty, but i think ricciardo did – he wasnt anywhere near side by side or close enough to make a clean pass – he hit another car out of the way! what the stewards could have done is tell redbull to tell ricciardo to let raikkonen back past or serve a stop go. but i think when they saw ricciardo catch up to hamilton, i believe they let him go unpunished in the hope he would spice up the race more and go for another overtake.

  9. It’s kind of funny watching the people campaigning to make sure Hamilton gets the blame for what is the responsibility of the “team.” They’ll grasp at the smallest thing like this inconclusive/half leak of radio communications to make sure Hamilton gets no empathy or is seen as the one cost himself the victory. Nothing new.It’s kind of funny watching the people campaigning to make sure Hamilton gets the blame for what is the responsibility of the “team.” They’ll grasp at the smallest thing like this inconclusive/half leak of radio communications to make sure Hamilton gets no empathy or is seen as the one cost himself the victory. Nothing new.

    1. Hamilton is part of this “team” as you say, and as part of this “team” he is apportioned a percentage of the blame. It is 100% fact that if Hamilton had not said a thing to his “team” then its 100% fact he would have been in 1st on the safety car restart. Was he 100% responsible? NO, and nobody has said that so lets not get out of line here. My personal opinion is this stems from his massive insecurity complex (well documented), Hamilton is so insecure that he think Merc would have called Nico in for fresh tires without giving his side of the garage a chance to react. That is NOT how Merc does business and after how many years Ham still cant see that.

      The “team” that made the fewest mistakes during the 2015 Monaco GP won, that was Nico’s “team”.

      1. im pretty sure both nico and seb also told their teams,their tyres were losing temp.so lewis was asking if the gap was big enough to pit.which is why he asked if is ok to pit.the pitwall have all the information,so they should have known how big the gap was.lewis didnt know.this is why you have a strategist and a pit wall,to make sure the correct calls are made.

      2. so insecure that he think Merc would have called Nico in for fresh tires without giving his side of the garage a chance to react.

        I like to think rather he thought cars might pit during the SC.

      3. I agree with you about LH’s insecurity, despite the fact I am a huge fan of his driving. He wanted the win so badly that he overthought and overreacted.

        Had he listened and acquiesced to the pit STAY OUT message, he would have won.

        But he had to bring the call into question. Silly mistake, what cost him a certain win.

    2. sudd, this is sport buddy! people chear for their favourite and bang on the weaknesses of the opposition. non hamilton fans are lucky, they get a lot of ammo to bomb him, ammo supplied by Hamilton himself.

    3. Because it´s the truth. Hamilton “insecured” his team by pondering over soft tires and tire change, although there was no obvious reason for it. So he lost. And his Team. Not the first time for the King of Unforced Errors.

  10. It’s kind of funny watching the people campaigning to make sure Hamilton gets the blame for what is the responsibility of the “team.” They’ll grasp at the smallest thing like this inconclusive/half leak of radio communications to make sure Hamilton gets no empathy or is seen as the one cost himself the victory. Nothing new.

    1. Your re-write where no doubt you intended to reverse the principals to ” “team” gets the blame” and “Hamilton responsible” came out as a repeat of the 1st. you must have inadvertently confused yourself.

  11. I still see this as a team failure not Hamilton. He questioned a choice, he didn’t say my tyres are dead is undrivable I can’t stay out, he just questioned the call.

    Vettel even moaned about the tyres being like swimming with weights in your legs but Ferrari held firm.

    1. @philipgb Vettel whined after they had the order in place behind the SC. It was mainly due to the slow pace of the safety car. No way Ferrari would have brought him in at that point.

      Mercedes haven’t had tire heating issues and maybe the vice-versa is true. I don’t understand why Hamilton even wanted to pit. The SS tires advantage wasn’t going to very decisive because it was Monaco. A couple of corners to cover and the rest of the laps the guy has to follow the lead car.

    2. @philipgb The driver is part of the team (AUT 2002, AUT 2001, DEU 2010, etc).

    3. Vettel was implying SC should be going a bit faster to get enough heat into the tyres. Ferrari is already at a disadvantage regarding tyre warm-up. You should understand how even dangerous driving behind that SC could have been, since he made such a daunting analogy. Also he did that after they were aligned behind SC, do you think he wanted Ferrari to pit him at that point?
      Just before SC, Verstappen was much faster than soft-tyre guys and he was a threat to those guys. It is not that incomprehensible why Mercedes might have thought supersoft would have been giving a huge advantage. It probably really did anyway. Though we don’t know if Max was calmer could he have gotten ahead of Grosjean without crashing out.

    4. Exactly, this seems more of a cultural issue inside the team. The team is maybe a little too scared of Hamilton so they fold at a timid questioning.

      1. After Spain though, would you be surprised?

        1. Now that he’s signed a new contract and isn’t going anywhere, they shouldn’t be so scared of negating him.

          1. But then he goes and gives statements to the press saying things like “I’ll definitely be making sure blabla’s not said again”….

  12. I remember when I began watching F1, the question of when or whether at all to pit was completely up to the driver. Being good at these decisions was what made Alain Prost “the professor”, it was part of why Berger was seen as a talent in mid-80ies, it was part of Mansell being a rather tragic-hero.

    So coming from there, it feels strange to blame a team onto an event where a driver used his steering-wheel to get his car into the pits. But I have to admit, I can´t remember the last occasion where a driver has disobeyed a call to the pits and was right about that. Has it happened within this generation of drivers? I doubt so.

    So instead of asking who is to blame within how it currently works in F1, I´m more interested in the question of “how can we change things in a way that, in any case where a car is in the pits that shouldn´t be there, the driver is responsible?”

    1. @crammond In Hungary 2011 and Brazil 2012, both Button and Hamilton received pit calls to pit. Both times Hamilton did, and both times Button disobeyed the team? The result? Being 55 seconds and 40 seconds ahead respectively.

    2. @crammond, where do you people get this stuff? You can’t just create for yourself what a grand prix was like just because technology didn’t give you insight into exactly what a driver was doing. Do you understand that the moment racing cars had telemetry and radio communication between driver and pitwall, neither side acted independently? It was always a team sport and they communicated even back when it was just hand written pit board signs. The driver does not make the calls, they just give input and take instructions. The only time teams defer the final decision to the driver is when they feel they have nothing to lose(gamble) or its raining, it which case the drivers input carries a bit more weight. In that case the final decision is probably 60/40 in favor of the team.

      1. @sudd Telemetry began purely with engine-info in the early/mid-80ies. It wasn´t before the early 90ies when it had first glimpses of info about the state of tyres, and obviously refuelling was banned before 94. Of course they were communicating via team-radio, but the vast majority of relevant info was with the driver, so it was indeed the driver who ultimatly took the decision. Not in a way that´s ignoring what the team said, but with the team knowing that only the driver could know how it really was out on the track and thus having to rely on the driver.

    3. @crammond

      I can´t remember the last occasion where a driver has disobeyed a call to the pits and was right about that.

      VET Monaco 2011 or later?

    4. I remember lots of cases of Button doing that sort of thing and gaining huge advantage from that. It was always marvelous.

      I think there are also some similar cases for Vettel. And I have the impression something like that happened with Raikkonen, or maybe not. It may be that they communicated with the team and changed the strategy though, rather than a direct disobedience. Same thing might have happened with Alonso/Schumacher/others too then… It would be interesting if someone who remembers the specific cases mentioned them.

      1. I also remember cases Hamilton questioned the orders, but they generally ended up with him not winning. Or maybe he is questioning always when he is not winning.

        1. But he wasn’t he winning?

          1. ?? incomprehensible

          2. I mean before the stop wasn’t he winning the race? and what you refer to as orders are more like suggestions. unless you hear a “box now” which is a order. or the ridiculous let Nico by from Hungary which is also a order.

          3. Yeah but he was also questioning, and then he was not winning anymore…

  13. The F1.com video highlights of the Monaco GP were absolutely fantastic. Not long ago we were all thinking that the sport was not promoting itself online aggressively enough but this is a real step up from them. Increase the license to YouTube and do similar for classic GPs and the fans will be overjoyed. There is a long, long way to go in marketing F1 successfully to all audiences but this is a positive move. If I were a casual fan looking to get into F1 and I saw the video on the sport’s official site, I would certainly be interested.

    As for the Hamilton pit call saga, I appreciate he was only questioning the call but he, and definitely those on the pit wall, should have seen that with 9 laps to go it was dangerous to pit. The poker player element they were missing was seeing that Vettel was never going to pit and find himself down the field for better tyres with such a short time to go. He would have lost too much for any benefit and was always going to stay out in hope the others would pit. That logic was clear to Ferrari and should have been instantly clear to Mercedes. Hamilton was simply the victim of his own success, had he been 5 seconds slower over the race, there is no way he would have been pulled in. But C’est la vie.

    1. It was really cheese and a very poor job.

      1. Well maybe kudos for at least making an effort. Not for the fans, but B/C-list starlets may enjoy it.

  14. I dont think Hamilton can be blamed anymore, he made reference to everyone else being on supersoft, information the pit crew had. Their reply should have been….yes stay out.

    1. I agree with you saying he made a reference, so engineer’s portion is bigger now, but I still think he started the ball going. Though I don’t blame him. Well, maybe I blame him if he didn’t check again with pit wall after he got stuck behind SC. Well, his race to lose really, not like I care who wins as long as it’s marvelous to watch.

  15. I believe the ‘Supersoft’ being in square brackets means it is implied and not told explicitly? If Hamilton did utter the name of the tires to the team and the team decided to bring him in, it would be the worst call.

    Still Vettel comfortably managed to hold off a SS Shod Mercedes even with a car that struggles to put heat into its tires. Hamilton unlocked the Pandora’s box and chaos ensured :)

    Maybe he is right in saying he doesn’t have to look after Rosberg’s race. He should have stuck to that in Monaco.

    1. ColdFly F1 (@)
      29th May 2015, 7:15

      @evered7, he probably said ‘options’. In the transcripts this is always ‘translated to the tyre type.

      Not sure how this changes the quality of the call. It was clearly a very poor one and between the team and the driver they made the mistake. Mercedes a humongous one by miscalculating the gap; Hamilton by questioning the original call ( and Mercedes again by not sticking to its decision; nothing Hamilton said was new information to Mercedes).

      1. @coldfly Just had a chance to see the video and hear it myself. He says ‘Options’ which is what is translated here as Supersoft.

        In that case, it was a massive screw up by Mercedes asking him to pit. I am not sure if Peter took the decision or someone from the strategy team did, but it was a ‘very’ fast change from stay out to box, box.

        My guess is that the 25sec gap they saw probably lulled them into a fall sense of security and they only realized their folly after Hamilton came out of the pits behind Vettel.

  16. Benyamin Netanyahu
    29th May 2015, 6:58

    Hambone missed his pit box. Then he was lagardly coming off the jacks. So Hambone himself ruined his last best chance to exit the pits ahead of Rosberg.

    1. I think ‘Lewis Hamilton’ was held due to another car in the pit lane.

  17. Even the race edit gets better after Verstappens crash. Some ‘gems’ /epic/mega radio messages in there we never got to hear in the race

    1. ColdFly F1 (@)
      29th May 2015, 9:41

      @mim5, the ‘Max are you OK’ was broadcast as well.

      The interesting one for me was ‘I think he is going straight home’ when we see Hamilton parked before the tunnel
      Anybody knows who uttered those words?

      1. I think Vettel said it. Someone posted it on Twitter the other day

        1. ColdFly F1 (@)
          29th May 2015, 11:51

          @brianfrank302, thanks. I should change my vote to Vettel for DOTW ;)

      2. @coldfly that was interesting too, Vettel too was thinking about that Senna moment

  18. Dieter Zetsche was absolutely livid about the pit stop so no conspiracy theories I guess

  19. I remember in Monza last year, after the customary pit stops, Mercedes pit wall asked Hamilton to save tyres and go for the kill during the last stage of gp to overtake Rosberg. Everyone was praising Hamilton when he did not listen to the pitwall and instead took the charge on Rosberg immediately and passed him. The pitwall also did not say anything to Hamilton when he took the charge (alteast there is no evidence available in form of team radio transcript to suggest otherwise)

    Come Monaco and Hamilton loses his deserved victory due to a very poor decision taken both by his side of garage and himself, but everyone are now blaming Mercedes for not informing Hamilton. I dont think Mercedes are to be blamed WHOLLY for this blunder pit stop. It was Hamilton’s paranoia and his assumption that others have pitted and changed tyres to SS while he would be on old Softs when the restart would happen. He wanted to destroy Rosberg as it is mentioned in jamesallenonf1 article where it is mentioned hamilton wanted to destroy rosberg.. It was his feedback regarding the tyres which made Mercedes to pit him and then Mercedes is solely blamed for the result!!

    First, when you are asked to stay out – you question that decision… And then due to lack of time and in heat of moment your feedback is considered and you are pitted and you lose the race, your fan brigade starts throwing stones at Mercedes. Wow wonderful. Why dont people realise that Hamilton was also involved in decision making and he is also to be blamed for his insecurities, his paranoia?

    I made Monza reference above because that time also he did not listen to pit wall’s decison and this time as well he did not listen to the original decison made by pitwall to stay out and then laid down his insecurities regarding tyres (which would have been obvious to the pitwall). Just to keep Hamilton happy they pitted him and now are facing the heat.

    I am sure if the opposite would have happened (i.e either Rosberg/Vettel or both had pitted and Hamilton on same old Soft tyres!) Mercedes would still be facing the heat had hamilton lost the race. Dammed if they do, dammed if they dont.

    It has always been like this with Hamilton, whenever he is involved in some situation – it has always resulted in drama. No wonder why Bernie loves him so much, he gets soooo much of publicity- and any form of publicity is good for Bernie be it good be it bad.

    1. ‘Insecurities’, ‘paranoia’ I guess are new words to replace ‘childish’ and ’emotional’.

      Anyway, he was not the only one who remarked about their tyres to the team. Some actually used very colourful words to do theirs.

      I don’t think you regard those other drivers who complained about their tyres as insecure and paranoid.

      Let’s not get personal with this. It’s just a race.

      1. Correct me if I’m wrong, but by other driver using colorful words to tell their tyre situation, you were referring to Vettel. If i am right in assuming your reference then he used those words when the order was settled behind safety car and it was going very slow. Even Rosberg told Brundle during podium interview that he never heard about the temperature the tyres had at the restart.

        The insecurity Hamilton had was that he thought Rosberg was on supersofts and pitwall was not taking the right decision by asking him to stay out. This is what I’m talking about. All events happened so quickly that no one got time to think properly and Mercedes miscalculated the gap.

        Why cant the blame be shared when both were involved in decision making? Why only Mercedes are blamed for this error when probably Hamilton’s reluctance to agree with the original decision is the reason for this whole situation?

        Yes it was just a race for me, infact if others also realised this as just a race maybe we won’t be discussing this issue even after 4 days since the race finished. I am not getting personal with you and I apologize if I hurt you. @tata

    2. Great and very insightful post!
      Hamilton is the british media’s toy. Because he is so “emotional” he tends to overreact everything and is easy to manipulate giving the press ample supply of drama. He knows this too and often uses it to his own advantage, knowing his words weigh more.
      Let’s face it, F1 is turning into a british national sport. Around 80% of the teams and their personnel are british, same is true for those running the sport and even the users of this website are 70-80% from the anglosphere. This holds true to the media too, though in a more indirect sense, albeit even ESPN’s F1 division is based in the UK. The trend was just made even more evident by the loss of France and Germany. I think this is unparalleled in any other global sport. Like many, I too wonder how the Haas F1 Team will fare with a base in the US.
      I think we all remember how last year Mercedes was accused of promoting a german driver, because they are a german team. We heard the same voices again after Monaco. People forget how there are barely any germans in the team and it’s actually the germans who should complain. They actually do though, by giving heat to Mercedes at home and generally losing interest in the sport.
      Back to the point, Alonso, Raikkönen or even Vettel and Rosberg are not any less marketable than Hamilton. They might appeal to different audiences, but I found Bernie’s statement in the matter quite anglo-centric, since he doesn’t really hear about all those promotions the other drivers do. I for one absolutely loved Petrov racing with tractors and trucks at a backwater siberian factory.

      1. Lol, it’s always the biggest nationalists who play this card, while the rest of us support Kimi or Ferrari or whoever.

        Hamilton relayed information about the tyres, which was absolutely correct. Correct to do, and the correct information as Rosberg and Vettel later confirmed.

        If there had been time to change them it would have been the right decision, and that part of the call was always 100% the team’s. With the complexity and timescale they got it wrong, and that’s why they apologised.

        It was about TIME. It has nothing to do with Monza 2014 which was about TYRES.

        Everyone involved was upset. They are supposed to be upset. The intensity of their desire to win is why we watch.

        1. @lockup I think I made myself very clear when I made Monza reference. It was used to tell the difference in public perception in similar situation i.e. Not to agree with what the team asked Hamilton to do, instead of tyres or time. When it was in favor of Hamilton everyone praised him and when it went against him, most of the people are blaming Mercedes only.

          Yes, Mercedes made an error while calculating the gap, but Hamilton should also be not left scot-free. If he would have agreed to stay out which was the initial decison taken he would have won the race as it was evident that despite being on fresh SS tyres he could not pass Vettel. Hamilton knew he was ahead of Rosberg and Vettel and by watching Merc pit crew outside he assumed Rosberg is now having SS tyres and then he referenced to other drivers on SS tyres. So Mercedes are to be blamed for Hamilton’s Assumption? How come someone who is behind him pit before him?? Surely Hamilton was over thinking at that time and paid the price.

          I never said Mercedes are not be blamed for this whole thing, I am only saying that both parties are to be blamed for this massive error.

          People are saying that after this Monaco fiasco, should hamilton trust his side of garage? I say even before he lost his lead and came behind Vettel, was he trusting them completely? If he was, then he would have stayed out as the original decision was to stay out. He didn’t trust them completely and due to lack of time and heat of moment he lost the race.

          1. No dude that’s complete misrepresentation sorry. He didn’t refuse to stay out. Nobody knew exactly how bad the old primes were going to be and whether or not they’d be bad enough to enable a pass with new options.

            Hamilton gave feedback about that risk, as was his job. It was a risk. Obviously he did NOT mean ‘bring me in even if it puts me behind’. Everybody understood that, that’s why the team apologised. The error was 0% in the tyres and 100% in the timing.

            Trust is not really an issue. He trusted their side of the complex process, and they trusted him. The driver fed back about the tyres and the team looked at all the rest of it and made the decision. It’s very mutual.

            And it’ll be even more mutual now IMO.

      2. +1

        If Ecclestone thinks drivers should be doing something more, he should create those opportunities himself. There are 20 guys at the height of this sport, really different from any other sport where you have either numerous teams with 5-10-20 players or maybe thousands of individuals.
        There is a similar view on the topic here:
        http://moresport.com/formula-1/are-vettel-rosberg-really-bad-business-for-f1

    3. Driving and pitstops are two different things. Monza was a different scenario, Hamilton’s tyres would be old also had he waited so it was wrong to even be offered that tip when overtaking is much easier than at other circuits.
      At Monaco he asked a question and referenced other drivers whom the pitwall had information on. Hamilton didnt take the decision to come in, he was asked to come in.

      1. @OOliver when did Hamilton refrenced other drivers to the pitwall? From whatever information available on internet, it was in HIS MIND that Rosberg had pitted for SS, when he saw on screen that Merc pit crew were out. He never asked whether driver A or B pitted.

        Hamilton did not take the decision to pit, but he was involved in decision making hence he is also to be blamed for it.

        Even he said later – We win together, we lose together…. Then why is it so hard to accept that both were at fault rather than just Mercedes only?

        1. I agree with the gist of your thoughts. But he’s referring to this I think:
          “Everyone’s going to be on [super-softs] now.”

          1. I misunderstood him. But still it was overthinking by Lewis in assuming that Rosberg & Vettel had done their pit stops earlier than him and that’s why he referenced for what you wrote above.

            This whole incident shows how much Hamilton trust his side of garage in making decisions at crucial times and this incident would have dented the trust even more, now that he lost the race. (his own doing atleast I see it that way)

          2. “This whole incident shows how much Hamilton trust his side of garage in making decisions at crucial times and this incident would have dented the trust even more, now that he lost the race.”

            I agree with that. But not solely based on this incident in which I think team’s got the lion’s share of the blame. More like accumulation of things like this over the years.

  20. Of course it was a stupid call by the team.

    But it was Lewis a race before that was angry at Bonnington for telling him to approach his race in a smart way.

    If he (Lewis) wanted some racing emotions, he surely got them this time.

  21. I think another big factor nowadays with Mercedes pitstops is Ferrari! Last season they didn’t have anyone to fear, they would always have enough lead to pit and stay in front. At least Ferrari is improving the show a little bit lol
    So the next time people say “Everything is the same as last year” I’ll just answer “Monaco tells you different” :P

      1. @davidnotcoulthard Well yes, of course! But Malaysia I’m still not sure if Mercedes would win with the 3 stop strategy. We’ll never know right? Maybe yes, maybe not. But Monaco is more blunt! No way to hide and it was a clear Mercedes victory lol

  22. Get out of the way of the charging Aussie! That was fun.

    1. That was rude. And I’m not talking about the radio comment. The move wasn’t very nice as the Iceman said.

      1. They’re not there to be nice to each other. What Ricciardo did was rough but not unfair. After all, it was Räikkönen who turned into him, not the other way round. Kimi may be complaining (as usual), but the mistake was his, whichever way we look at it.
        A) If he didn’t notice Ricciardo getting very interested in overtaking him, that’s a major mistake, because the much-evoked impossibility of overtaking in Monaco isn’t a curse that magically enforces itself – you have to put some effort into it.
        B) If he did notice Ricciardo, closing the door without leaving any space for the Aussie still wasn’t a smart move, just like his “I don’t like your style, so I’m taking both of us out” approach to blocking Pérez in 2013. There was nothing to be gained from it.

        Thankfully, the stewards of the meeting figured that out, too.

        1. You and stewards are free to keep thinking that. I also think it was “rude”.

        2. You can’t punt people out of the race like that. If you could, they’d design the end plates differently and let drivers nudge the guy in front like a computer game.

          I’m not Kimi’s biggest fan, but I think he has a point.

          1. @ nase…exactly. raikonnen knew exactly where ricci was and, IMO, closed the door. depending on what angle you view the footage it still appears to be problematic insofar as where was ricci’s front left at the time of contact? one shot that i have seen shows the red bull at least one third of the way alongside when the contact was made. needless to say the stewards saw it correctly. it was a racing incident and treated, fairly, as such.

          2. @kenneth being 1/3 means it is not enough. More than that, at best Ricc’s front wheel was aligned with Rai’s rear tyres. That is not near enough. Only after Ricc had touched Rai, he looked alongside enough.

          3. @john-h
            Who drove into whom? It was Räikkönen who slammed the door shut, while Ricciardo stayed on the right as far as possible.
            Consequently, that’s neither punting nor nudging nor anything else from Ricciardo’s side, just a collision that was due to Räikkönen not acknowledging Ricciardo’s presence in the slightest way. Can’t blame the Aussie for believing in respect between drivers.

  23. Just a few things i’d like to throw out there.

    The first been something I’ve not seen get much of a mention so far, The GPS data was very spotty at Monaco & the GPS tracking systems is something the teams usually use when looking at gaps while planning pit stops. That system along with the timing loops (Which i’m not sure are used at Monaco) gives teams access to real time gap information, Without those there relying only on the standard timing data collected at the 2 intermediate points & start/finish line.

    The second point is that its Monaco so the strategy guys on the pit wall can’t see the pit lane to see who’s (If anyone) has come out preparing for a stop unless they step away from the pit wall setup.

    The final point relays to the team knowing what Nico would be doing, They would have but I don’t believe they were thinking about Nico at that point & were instead focused on what Ferrari may be doing.
    Its easy to then say that the Ferrari’s were no threat because overtaking is impossible at Monaco, But that statement isn’t really accurate because overtaking IS possible at Monaco, Its very difficult but very possible if you set the move up right & get into the right position to take a risk.

    Mercedes in that heat of the moment given what Lewis was saying & the ‘fear’ that Ferrari could pit & be on faster tyres (Especially seeing what Verstappen had done on those tyres in terms of pace/overtaking) made a snap call, Perhaps without all the data they usually woudl have (Because of the spotty GPS signal & I believe lack of full timing loops & without been able to see the pit lane) simply made the wrong call.

    1. I think you are right. If Vettel pitted and did go for it, he might have gotten ahead. Low possibility, but not impossible, even with Kvyat in-between. Even if Lewis couldn’t overtake Sebastian. RBR was after podium, so they did something like all or nothing with Ricc, but Ferrari didn’t think the same way for the win probably.

    2. Good points, but at the end of the day, the issue was the lack of a person willing and able to make a simple call without the data. Wolff keeps saying that they had to decide 50m before pit entry and look at the data in that time. But this was not a situation where you are using all available data to falsify a proposition—here, that the car should not be brought in. If you don’t/can’t have sufficient data or enough time to run it, you should not even be into that process. Indeed, now your face is pressed to the screens and your mind occupied with tire temp data, intervals, fuel burn, etc., while the situation of the race is developing second-to-second. Someone should say, from his “gut,” AKA experience, that this move will end in tears, so don’t do it. Wolf doesn’t seem to want to be that guy.

    3. Come on forget all that crap. You don’t pit at Monaco in the lead with 10-15 laps remaining. It really is that simple. No data, judgement based on experience at the track.

  24. What is interesting in this whole saga is that people are missing the impact of “Single Strategist” policy Mercedes have for both drivers. I have criticized this before, and cannot see how it makes any sense.
    This incident has simply proven the fallacy of that policy. If Rosberg and Lewis had their own strategists, this mistake wold have been flagged up immediately.
    Lewis’s strategist would have told him to stay out, as he would be aware that Rosberg was not pitting. Having a single strategist means you are trying to use one brain to ensure the best outcome for two competitive parties – at the same time. How on earth can that be possible?? Especially where the margins for mistakes are razor thin; like the situation we had in Monaco.

    Unfortunately, Mercedes seems destined to continue this policy; as Toto Wolff has already intimated. I think it is something they need to rectify and revisit asap.

    1. With 2 strategists Nico and Sebastian could also win more. Nico because the team wouldn’t be thinking of the guy in front primarily, and giving an opportunity to attack Nico when Lewis is behind, or making sure Lewis wins even if at the cost of Nico. Sebastian because they would be dropping the ball from time to time and he would be slipping past them.

  25. The more we know, the less clear it gets. A good example for the overused saying that a driver and his team always win and lose together.

  26. Vettel thinking up analogies behind the safety car on ice cold tyres just to ask Bernd Mayländer “can we go faster, please?” LOL

  27. Great. Another Mercedes cock up. Starting to feel like Mclaren again.

    1. Is Lewis McLarenizing the Mercedes? Since he said that he likes to be the team leader, maybe they are shaping around him… Think about every time Jenson Button didn’t listen to pit orders then went onto win the race and such, in a team Lewis Hamilton was regarded more highly by Ron Dennis. Why does this sort of thing keeps happening to Hamilton? Similar to how Fernando Alonso always makes rather poor career choices.

  28. AJ (@fifthlion)
    29th May 2015, 16:04

    This just shows that Lewis even said that EVERYONE was on the other tyre, so the team should have said nobody is on the other tyre. No matter how you look at it, it was a massive mistake by the team!

  29. Getting annoyed at people forgetting that the driver is part of the team.

    1. No need to get annoyed @davidnotcoulthard. It just needs this clarity of thought: the tyre call was correct. The timing call was the error.

      Lemme say that again: it would have been good to changes tyres, if there was time. If there wasn’t time, it would be bad.

      The driver does the tyre call, the team does the time. As per normal, for reasons that we all understand. Simples :)

      1. Why did the team then say for him to stay out only for them to change their mind after he questioned the call?

        1. @smartrip because he added extra information into the equation. The dead tyres increased the benefit from a stop, but nobody ever thought it was worth losing positions over, that was pure error. Not error about the tyres, but about the timing.

      2. @lockup Yeah, no need for that. Doesn’t quite actually stop me from being a bit annoyed, though :)

  30. Hindsight is wonderful :) However, Vettel had a free pitstop so Mercedes would have expected him that there is a chance that he would take that opportunity. If you then believe that with new supersofts, Ferrari would have a more than 50% chance to overtake you, pitting and losing track position is the correct decision. Vettel only needed to do the opposite of Hamilton or Rosberg, and would either gain track position or have the better tyres, so the strategic choices of Ferrari would have been quite simple. If Hamilton pits, stay out and hope to come out in front. If Hamilton stays out, pit and try to attack with new tyres. Similar story with Rosberg.

  31. This cannot be read as being Lewis’ fault, for one simple reason:

    Bonnington: Nico and Vettel will be on worn prime. You are under no threat.

    Hamilton: OK.

    Twenty-five points in the bag.

    1. Bonnington didn’t know whether Vettel would be on worn prime or not.

      1. Chris Phillips
        29th May 2015, 20:07

        True but had Lewis just known nico & Seb had not pitted he would not have pitted. He pitted to cover their stop which they did not do.

    2. It’s Lewis’ fault for hanging out with Kendal Jenner pre-race. She brought bad luck to his race.

      1. Hey, if they get married, he will have TWO mothers-in-law. That’s KARMA, bro.

        1. ONLY two? I think more…

  32. Where did this radio transcript come from? No other F1 news outlet is reporting on this, @keithcollantine. This is very odd as FOM releases the same radio communications to EVERYONE!

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