Fernando Alonso believes Ferrari's decision to start on the medium compounds is what saw him fighting for the podium at the German GP.
While his rivals opted to qualify on the soft Pirelli tyres, Ferrari put Alonso on the medium compound which meant he was unable to challenge for pole position and qualified P8.
However, the decision also meant he ran a longer first stint that all his main rivals barring Romain Grosjean.
And when the 60-lap grand prix played out, it was Grosjean who Alonso was battling with for the third place.
The Frenchman, though, secured it by less than two second ahead of Alonso who defended Ferrari's strategy.
"The strategy gave us the possibility to fight for the podium," the double World Champ said during Ferrari's press briefing.
"We were not quick enough to day, we didn't have the pace, but even with that we fought for the podium with the leading group.
"It is hard for me to imagine if we had started fifth and we used soft, hard, hard, hard as the main competitors I would not have fought with them.
"But we were fighting with them thanks to the strategy."
The Spaniard weighed in on Pirelli's revised tyres, which now feature a Kevlar-belt, saying they worked better than expected in the heat at the Nurburgring.
"The tyres were good, no problems with safety," Alonso said.
"Only when Felipe had the problem in Turn One I didn't know if it was the tyre so I asked over the radio if there was any problem with the tyre because it was strange but there was nothing wrong with the tyre.
"They were this weekend very very sensitive to temperature. In FP1 the mediums were unbelievably good for Mercedes, one second ahead of everyone. Then with hotter temperature Mercedes lost performance.
"Yesterday with it hot for one lap Lotus and Ferrari were very good and today with it even hotter I think the soft were working much better than expected.
"The tyres were working very very good."