After a nail biting weekend for Mercedes in which Hamilton was struck with a five place grid penalty as well as being disqualified from qualifying as a result of a rear wing technical infringement, only to fight back to take victory and keep his title hopes alive, Wolff has discussed the controversial decisions from the stewards which his team were subject to.
Mercedes took the decision early in the weekend to put a new internal combustion engine in Hamilton’s car, a decision which gave him a five place grid penalty for Sunday’s Grand Prix but also a big straight line speed advantage over his rivals. When asked about the new power unit components, Wolff confirmed the team intend to continue using it for the remainder of the season.
“Yes absolutely, we are going to the end of the season now with this engine. We still have questions over reliability but we hope we have the right answers and yes, we are going to the end," said Wolff.
You better believe it. 💜🖤👊 pic.twitter.com/edvrAmOpQQ— Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS F1 Team (@MercedesAMGF1) November 14, 2021
Following qualifying on Friday, it was revealed Hamilton was under investigation for breach of technical regulations in relation to the DRS opening in the rear wing. It was then announced he would be excluded from the result of the qualifying session resulting in him starting the Sprint on Saturday from last place only to get all the way to P5 by the end.
“Yeah I think you need to put the whole weekend together.” said Wolff when asked about Hamilton’s dominant performances. “He was on pole on Friday, then climbed back from P20 to P5 in a twenty three lap race, and then [Sunday] from P10 to P1 and overall I think I definitely rate that among the best ever performances I have ever seen from him.”
Wolff continued to discuss the controversial incident between Lewis Hamilton and championship leader Max Verstappen in which the two drivers left the track as Verstappen aggressively defended his position.
“Yeah, you know, whatever is in the director's notes we are going to accept. I’m also okay if the director’s notes are being shredded and we just race hard like we did today, fine.” he said. “If the director’s notes say that you can’t push anyone off the track in Mexico, then obviously that’s valid here too and actually being driven off track is not very consistent.
“My discussion with the race director was not broadcasted, but my reaction was. We will discuss it behind closed doors.”
Immediately following the race, Wolff declared the hard fought victory as one of the most satisfying of his career.
“Yes it is. We started the weekend on the back foot with our self-inflicted engine penalty, and then we got disqualified yesterday which was harsh and today in the race things went against us too.”