Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton had to race with damage to his front wing in the first half of the Emilia Romagna GP, after making slight contact with Red Bull's Max Verstappen into Turn 1.
Hamilton started from pole position but was outdragged by Verstappen off the starting grid. Not giving up, Hamilton tried to hang around the outside of the first corner but was forced wide by the Red Bull and over the kerbing. Bits of his front wing visibly broke off, although Hamilton was able to continue.
Mercedes' engineer Andrew Shovlin has explained that the damage cost Hamilton a few tenths a lap, although the gap between Verstappen and Hamilton only grew to a maximum of five seconds in the opening stint before closing up again.
"The initial damage looked really bad, of the order of half a second or so," Shovlin told media, including RacingNews365.
"It was being made worse by the fact the footplate was flopping around, it was held on by some pressure tappings. And that was causing a lot of very inconsistent flow further down the car. When we actually jettisoned that, and happily, we got rid of it without it puncturing the tyre, the damage was about half of that amount.
"So, two or three tenths or something. But the problem is, we're so close to where Max is on pace, it's the difference between being able to keep up and, and drifting back a bit. So yeah, it was quite a compromise."
With Verstappen vaulting off the line to pass Hamilton, Shovlin admitted that the Red Bull simply seemed to make a better getaway, and this could be possibly attributed to better tyre warmup on the RB16B for the intermediates.
"I think they did here," Shovlin said. "But I don't know that that would have necessarily been the case off the line. I think you saw that in the first couple of laps.
"That's not to say their car is better than ours in that regard, because these are things that you can configure and it's always a bit of a compromise between the warm up and then the longer run.
"Whether we got that compromise right, we need we need to go off and have a look at it. But I think that the glimpses we saw on the intermediate, yes, it looked like they did although obviously Lewis did sustain that damage and he's trying to figure out what the cars doing.
"You know, where it's strong and where it's weak. If I look on the medium tyre, it's not so clear. I thought we were actually pretty good on the warm up compared to them."