Sakhir GP: Bottas’ race hopes dashed after botched pit stop

Valtteri Bottas’ bad luck continued at the Sakhir Grand Prix, after a messy pit stop forced him to finish the race on worn out tyres.

It was another weekend to forget for the Finnish driver, who was forced to end the race on a set of worn out hard tyres, leaving him vulnerable to the cars behind him.

The Mercedes driver sat in second place for a large part of the race, but when both him and George Russell were called into the pits for a double-stack, he was sat in the box for 27-seconds.

The 31-year-old then left the pits with his hard tyres still on the car, after Mercedes realised they had sent Russell out on the tyres intended for the Finn.

The stop dropped Bottas to fifth place, but as the safety car ended, he was left helpless as the cars on fresher tyres behind began to overtake him.

At the chequered flag, the Mercedes driver came home in eighth place, a disappointing result after running in second for so long.

Speaking to Sky F1 after the race, Bottas gave his thoughts on the deflating result.

“I wish I knew what happened,” he said.

“Obviously as a team we did big mistakes today.

“I came in the pit stop under the safety car because we had a free stop, time wise.”

After a mistake which ultimately cost the team a one-two finish, the Finn was certain that the team would learn from the confusion.

“Normally, as a team we’re bulletproof, we don’t do mistakes, but now we did,” he said.

“I’m sure we will learn from that.

“But obviously that destroyed the race.”

After coming out of the pits on already worn out tyres, it was a struggle for Bottas to get to the end, who admitted the tyres cost him positions.

“The temperature was the issue, especially on the front axle,” he said.

“There was people with fresh tyres and it was hard to compete.”

With one round left of the 2020 season, Bottas will hope to end the year on a high, after a string of races that have not gone his way.