Mercedes technology director Mike Elliot explained how the wheels were blocked during braking for the first corner which cost Lewis Hamilton at the relaunch of the Grand Prix of Azerbaijan after which he fell to the back of the standings.
Hamilton was in second place at the restart and before the first corner he was next to Perez from the inside, but due to a strong blocking of the front wheels, the Briton extended straight into the forbidden zone and fell to the last place.
Although the wheel lock was initially associated with smoke coming out of Hamilton’s brakes, it was later revealed that Hamilton accidentally pressed a switch that shifts the brake balance forward which is used to use the brakes to warm the front tires.
“We are not allowed to talk to drivers so we are not allowed to tell them which settings they need to change so we have tried to simplify things as much as we can,” Elliot said.
Magic brake button
"We're trying to create tools that drivers can use and which reduce the responsibility they have because they have a lot of work to do."
“One of them is the‘ magic brake button ’, I honestly don’t know why we call it like that, it’s a button that allows drivers to transfer heat to the brakes, shifts the braking balance forward to warm the front brakes, and thus the front tires.
” “Lewis did everything well, put himself in the starting lineup, turned off all the settings he needed, turned on the ones he needed and everything was ready to start. He had a fantastic start, he was next to Perez and he had to react to Perez's move.
" “In that moving, he accidentally pressed the magic button. Unfortunately, he didn’t feel like he did it so he had no idea he had a problem. At the time of braking, which was a normal braking moment, he was in a position where his braking balance was quite forward.
” "That's why the wheels blocked and he couldn't do anything but go wide." After Verstapen gave up, the gap between the leading duo in the fight for the title is still four points in favor of Verstappen.
We will have a more interesting race between two great drivers, and even though he is in the lead, most believe that Verstappen will not be able to win the title.