Valtteri Bottas says his race in Turkey was probably the best in his F1 career. The Mercedes driver looked convincing from the start of the race and eventually celebrated a dominant victory ahead of two Red Bull drivers, Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez.
"I think this was probably my best race ever. Except for that one slip, I had everything under control, "Bottas said after the victory. Bottas was second in the qualifiers but started from pole position as Lewis Hamilton received a 10-place penalty for changing the V6 internal combustion engine.
"As I said before the race, the car was very good in all conditions. I had good confidence in the car and was able to control it. It's not easy to choose a strategy here, when to stop and which tires to choose, but I'm glad that everything went smoothly.
" The track dried slowly during the race, but never enough to be able to switch to dry tires. In some parts, a narrow line appeared with the most grip “When you only have one dry line, you don’t need too much to run off the track.
I definitely had to be focused throughout the race. It was difficult, but I think this is a well-deserved victory, "added Bottas.
Hamilton wanted to finish the race on one set of tires, as Esteban Ocon did. The team tried to persuade him to replace it, but he flatly refused.
Eight laps before the end, he still give in and went for a tire change, but it cost him a lot. "The tires were bald, so you don't know how far you can go. There are definitely concerns about the life of the tire, but I didn't really profit in the end.
” “I probably should have stayed on the track or gone for a replacement much earlier. When you go to replace eight laps before the end, you don't have time to go through the stage where the grains appear on that tire.
" “Then I went through the skating phase where I almost lost even more positions. It's a little frustrating, but that's it. ” Hamilton says they made a mistake today and lost important points. "We lost important points today.
If I had stayed on the track, I don’t know if I would have been in the same position. Who knows." After this race, Max Verstappen again took the lead in the driver’s championship and is now 6 points ahead of Lewis Hamilton.