Mercedes have explained a radio message from Valtteri Bottas during the Belgian Grand Prix in which he expressed surprise at being told not to use an engine mode to attack team mate Lewis Hamilton.
“I don’t remember that,” Bottas replied.
Team principal Toto Wolff said the drivers had been given instructions to reserve the last available use of their highest power engine mode in case they came under attack from a rival, such as Max Verstappen.
“There’s no rules in place between the two drivers,” said Wolff. “They are allowed and free to race.
“In the morning we agreed and discussed that, we obviously have a limited amount of overtakes and that we would try not to use them against each other, or the last one against each other, because there’s always the risk of needing it against Max or any other car.
“So this is what we were referring to and Valtteri, obviously, this was maybe a miscommunications between him and some of the guys. And that’s why we reiterated it.”
Bottas radio messages over his power unit mode
|To Bottas||HPP one set position four. Verstappen 1.4 behind.|
|To Bottas||Verstappen 1.2.|
|To Bottas||HPP one to four.|
|To Bottas||Gap to Verstappen 1.6.|
|To Bottas||DRS has been enabled.|
|To Bottas||Gap to Lewis 1.3, gap to Verstappen 1.8.|
|To Bottas||As you can see Lewis managing more turn 11.|
|To Bottas||Getting close to PU [unclear].|
|To Bottas||Gap to Lewis 1.1.|
|To Bottas||You have DRS.|
|To Bottas||So Vertappen 2.4 behind.|
|To Bottas||HPP one set position four. One is not allowed.|
|Bottas||We have one push now.|
|To Bottas||We do but we agreed not to use it against each other.|
|Bottas||I don’t remember that.|
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