Formula 1 News

Hamilton and Button undone by strategic errors

"Pit-stops are somewhere we can always improve" said Hamilton
Sunday, May 8, 2011

ISTANBUL, May 8, 2011 (AFP) - British duo Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button of McLaren looked back on "one of those days" when strategic and pit-stop errors marred their results in Sunday's Turkish Grand Prix.

Hamilton and Button, world champions in 2008 and 2009 respectively, both felt they could have enjoyed more profitable afternoons after finishing fourth and sixth respectively at the Istanbul Park circuit.

In-form champion German Sebastian Vettel won for Red Bull ahead of his team-mate Australian Mark Webber with two-times champion Spaniard Fernando Alonso third for Ferrari.

"It was just one of those races," said Hamilton. "Pit-stops are somewhere we can always improve, but I lost a lot of ground when I tried to go down the outside of Webber at the start of the race.

"I had a good start and I should have been up to third and battling for second, but it wasn't to be. Jenson was fair as always as we battled but when I got past Jenson I had nothing left in my tyres and I had to stop again." Hamilton suffered a roller-coaster of pit lane dramas - one dazzling stop enabling him to regain a position by passing Brazilian Felipe Massa of Ferrari in the pit lane and another, when he suffered from a sticky wheel nut, costing him a place to the same rival.

"That's the way it goes, isn't it?" said Hamilton.

Team-mate Button found it difficult to be as philosophical as his partner. "Most people were probably on my strategy initially, but because most of them damaged their tyres in the first stint they changed their strategy (from three stops to four).

"We didn't, but we didn't leave our (first) stop until late enough. We should have stayed out longer because the last stint was impossible having so many laps on the hard tyre.

"You're not racing any more because the difference in speed is unbelievable.

"They just come past you and you can't do anything. It's a pity to finish so far back but strategy wise something we did wrong."

Button clearly blamed the McLaren team for this error, but was happy enough with his overall performance.

"It's early in the season so we have a long way to go. anything is going to happen this year."

 

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