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Bottas: Leclerc's move "completely unnecessary"

NEWS STORY
04/08/2019

Having already lost out to teammate, Lewis Hamilton courtesy of two lock-ups in almost as many corners, as Valtteri Bottas continued to lose ground he was passed by Charles Leclerc on the back straight from Turn 3.

As he passed the Mercedes the Monegasque suddenly jinked to the left and hit its front wing with his left-rear wheel, damaging the wing and causing Bottas to pit for a new one a couple of laps later, a move which totally compromised his race.

"At the time when it happened I thought I was just focussed on something else, and maybe didn't see him," said the Finn, "but it happened pretty quick.

"But then when I saw the onboard, and when I saw Vettel's onboard, it was clear that I was just going straight ahead, he was on the right, and he would have been anyways ahead of me before Turn 4 going straight. But then suddenly he swept across and for me it was too late to react.

"I love hard racing, that's for sure, but that was completely unnecessary," he insisted, "and compromised my race. He was lucky enough not to get a puncture. That's not how it should be."

As for the start, which saw him, Verstappen and Hamilton enter Turn 1 three abreast, he said: "I was on the outside of Verstappen, I tried to brake late, tried to go for the outside. He braked late as well, so I had a bit of a lock-up, so that caused a bit of a flat spot, so going into Turn 2 I had some understeer because of that.

"But it was all OK. Lewis was also on the outside, but there was still room for two of us, maybe left a bit too much because he could carry good speed into Turn 3.

"We were side-by-side, for sure he didn't leave any room for me, so that compromised my exit out of Turn 3, I had to lift. Then on the way to Turn 4 Charles came on the right hand side and suddenly swept across, and took my front wing.

"So that was it really, it compromised the race, and losing big chunks of time in the beginning, then stopped early, going through traffic all through the race, that was really the story."

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1. Posted by Stitch431, 06/08/2019 9:45

"Absolutely right. It is okay to let the guys race, but this was way over the line. You can obviously see that Leclerc steered to the left and bumped into Bottas on purpose. If it had been Max, he would most probably have been penalized + given penalty points. The FIArrari has now confirmed two races in a row, to favor the Italian team and does not feel the least bit of embarrassment in trying to justify something so obviously crooked..."

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2. Posted by Spindoctor, 05/08/2019 8:01

"I have to agree with Bottas. It was an unnecessary & potentially dangerous move."

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