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Teammates crucial in title battle admits Hakkinen

NEWS STORY
13/10/2021

Two-time world champion, Mika Hakkinen says that Sergio Perez and Valtteri Bottas will be crucial as the 2021 title fight continues.

While it hasn't always been the case, on Sunday evening both Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen owed their respective teammates a beer and a thank you hug.

In winning the race, and taking fastest lap, Bottas not only helped Mercedes maintain its championship lead, it prevented Verstappen extending his.

Meanwhile, in one of the true highlights of the afternoon - of which there were few - Perez held off a determined Hamilton who had worked his way through the field after starting eleventh.

At one point in their battle the Mexican was almost forced into the pitlane as they fought for position, but the Red Bull driver stood his ground thereby halting Hamilton's progress.

Two-time world champion, Mika Hakkinen says that as the 2021 championship fight reaches its climax, Bottas and Perez will need to continue to give their teammates their full support.

"On a day when Lewis had to take a 10-place grid penalty as the result of an engine change, Valtteri did everything that his team could hope for," writes the Finn in his regular column for Unibet.

"Sergio has had some difficult races recently, so this was a great performance and good timing for the team," adds.

"As we move into the final six races in the world championship I think that Valtteri and Sergio will come to play an increasingly important role in providing Lewis and Max with the right level of support and strategy options.

"Max only leads the world championship by six points, so with 156 points available during these final races the title could swing one way or the other very quickly.

"What is also clear from the weekend is that the Mercedes has moved ahead of the Red Bull in terms of performance," says Hakkinen, who won both his titles with McLaren..

"Lewis and Valtteri were quickest in qualifying, and Max is admitting that Red Bull have some work to do if they are to win this world championship."

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by Stitch431, 14/10/2021 8:27

"Not only the teammates. I wonder what the FIA would have said and done, if Red Bull would all of a sudden be 15 -20 km/h faster after putting in a new engine ... They seem to do everything to help Mercedes this entire season."

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2. Posted by jcr, 14/10/2021 0:47

"The real hero for Max was Yuki, The Rookie, who held off Hammi for 8 laps, while the Hammi/Merc teams Aston & McLaren, literally Jumped out of his way."

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