Mercedes have endorsed Lewis Hamilton’s assertion that his “tough place” radio message in the course of the Australian Grand Prix was about engine cooling.
In the direction of the tip of the race in Melbourne, on his solution to ending fourth, the seven-time former World Champion mentioned “you guys put me in a very tough place”.
It was not instantly clear to what Hamilton was referring, though it got here at a time when he was operating behind his team-mate George Russell who ended up on the rostrum in third.
In his media interviews afterwards, Hamilton insisted his message had been about having to handle his engine temperatures, saying: “I couldn’t struggle for third as a result of the engine was overheating. So I needed to again off, simply needed to sit behind.”
Throughout their post-race debrief, Mercedes have defined the scenario Hamilton was having to nurse to make sure his energy unit didn’t overheat.
“That was all about engine cooling and conserving the PU cool in the course of the course of the race,” mentioned James Vowles, Mercedes’ motorsport technique director.
“We push all the pieces to the restrict, as you’ll think about, and a kind of is engine cooling, and also you do this by closing up the bodywork or altering the louvre design in the back of the automobile.
“That call is made on Saturday however clearly we had been racing on Sunday, 24 hours later, and on this explicit circumstance the ambient was one, perhaps two levels hotter than we had anticipated.
“On account of that, ourselves, and never simply ourselves, you’ll have heard it from groups up and down the grid, had been proper on the restrict of what the engine and the PU can take by way of cooling necessities.
“Throughout the course of the race, when you find yourself following a automobile it meant Lewis needed to compromise what he was doing. He needed to transfer out of the soiled air of the automobile in entrance of him and ensure he obtained cool, clear air by means of the radiators to drop the PU temperatures down.
“However doing that makes racing the automobile in entrance extremely tough and that’s why his message got here out.”
In ending third and fourth respectively, Russell and Hamilton collected sufficient factors to place the staff second within the Constructors’ Championship, albeit a whopping 39 behind early runaway leaders Ferrari going into the fourth spherical of the season, the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix at Imola on April 24.