Mercedes admits to radio error on Hamilton’s failed Monaco F1 undercut – Motorsport Week

Mercedes has admitted that it committed an error with the communication provided to Lewis Hamilton during an undercut attempt in Formula 1’s Monaco Grand Prix.

The Mercedes drivers and Red Bull’s Max Verstappen were caught out when a first-lap red flag disrupted their strategy and forced them to nurse their Medium rubber.

But with Hamilton having the gap behind to pit and not lose a place, Mercedes called the seven-time champion into the pits to revert to the Hard compound on Lap 51.

However, the Briton was not given the ‘out-lap critical’ message and would emerge behind Verstappen when Red Bull responded on the next lap to cover the undercut.

As Verstappen utilised his new tyres to start hunting down George Russell in the other Mercedes car, Hamilton would enquire as to the reason behind the absent call.

Explaining why Hamilton did not receive the message he required, Wolff said: “That was a miscommunication first between us on the pit wall that we got that wrong.

“It should have been an ‘out-lap critical’, trying to undercut. 

“But then there was a debate whether any out-lap would be enough from the new tyre. And so the message he got was at best confusing but probably wrong.

“It should have been an out-lap critical and the worry in the background was that if we thrashed that tyre in a single lap, then what would happen later. 

“But in summary wrong message to Lewis, this was the team’s fault.”

Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W15 makes a pit stop. 26.05.2024. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 8, Monaco Grand Prix, Monte Carlo, Monaco, Race Day.

But Wolff has accepted that overtaking being near impossible around Monte Carlo’s tight and twisting streets meant the result was set in stone past the second start.

“There was one strategic play that could have helped us and this is beyond the Safeti Car at the right time,” he added.

“But it could have been that both cars could have worked together and created the necessary gap for a stop.

“Now, obviously that’s fair for one and unfair for the other one, but I think that could have been a play variant.

“The moment the crash happened, it was clear that we were really on the back foot. Fundamentally, I don’t think there is a lot you can change in Monaco.

“You pretty much end where you start. A few years ago [2022], it was eight seconds off the pace and it was still a lot of work.”

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