Bottas: Tyres to blame for Austin fade away


Valtteri Bottas has said his long stint on the soft tyres left him vulnerable to late attacks at the United States Grand Prix as he slipped down a P5 finish.

The Finn missed a podium spot for a third consecutive race after Kimi Raikkonen and Max Verstappen both found a way through in the latter stages at the Circuit of The Americas.

"I think all the way until maybe 20 laps to go, it was all OK. The pace seemed to be good," Bottas said.

"But the long stint with the soft tyre in the end, the last 10 laps, just the pace was dropping quite a bit. The guys who switched to a two-stop seemed to be having the edge at that point.

"I tried everything I could to defend, but it was too late. Then we had to stop in the end and unfortunately that's it, we couldn't react earlier than that.

"The problem was in the second stint, we had to manage a lot to make the tyres last. but there was Sebastian ahead of me and Kimi was putting pressure all the time, so I couldn't make enough tyre saving to make the tyres last."
Bottas is now officially out of the running for the World Drivers' Championship, but the Finn has made a valuable contribution toward Mercedes retaining the World Constructors' title for a fourth straight year.