F1 managing director Ross Brawn does not think Red Bull could have done anything more for Max Verstappen in Barcelona.
Lewis Hamilton made another huge statement in his pursuit of an eighth title by claiming victory at the Spanish Grand Prix, making it three wins out of four races in 2021.
By going longer on his first stint and later making another stop for new medium tyres, Hamilton went from being P2 for most of the race to ultimately a comfortable victor.
For Verstappen it was inevitable really that he would lose the lead and the win to Hamilton who caught him with far fresher rubber, but Brawn does not see what Red Bull could have done differently on the pit wall to change the outcome.
“I’m not sure Red Bull could have done anything other than what they did in terms of strategy in Spain,” Brawn wrote in his Spanish Grand Prix column.
“Had they boxed the lap after Lewis’s second stop, they would have conceded track position. Whether or not that would have meant a closer contest to the end of the Grand Prix is simply speculation.
“Max did everything right at the start to impressively take the lead. He’s not afraid to take the fight to Lewis. The reality is he knows he is unlikely to beat Lewis if he’s second at the end of the first lap, and that gives him the commitment to go for a pass when it’s 50-50.
“In contrast, Lewis knows that he can beat Max from second place on lap one – as he did today – so he doesn’t necessarily take that risk.
“Max won’t let this result get to him, though. This was a very, very good drive from him. His package just wasn’t quick enough. He knows this is his best chance ever to win the world title – and will back himself to take victory next time out in Monaco.”
It was a weekend for the history books in Barcelona as Hamilton took pole number 100 of his career, the only driver to come anywhere close to that milestone.
And Brawn does not think Hamilton is finished stretching his records yet.
“Hats off to Lewis, this was another fantastic weekend where he made yet more history by taking his 100th pole position. It’s just an incredible achievement,” he said.
“He’s so far ahead of anyone else in this metric – with Michael Schumacher next best on 68 – and isn’t showing any signs of slowing down. You could see the emotion when he took pole on Saturday. Such a remarkable milestone clearly means a lot to him.”