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Wolff explains Hamilton radio intervention after 'bruising' day

Toto Wolff explained that Mercedes struggled to get the W14 car 'in the right place' after a frustrating Austrian Grand Prix for Lewis Hamilton and George Russell.

Mercedes Team Principal Toto Wolff explained that his Austrian Grand Prix team radio intervention was simply to "calm things down" amid a difficult event for the team. After qualifying in P5, Lewis Hamilton was unable to sustain a challenge to the Red Bull and Ferrari drivers, and even struggled to keep McLaren's Lando Norris behind. His efforts created multiple track limits violations, which resulted in a time penalty and several frustrated radio message from Hamilton. Such was Hamilton's frustration, Wolff elected to make a rare radio communication in a bid to help the Briton retain focus on the race. “Lewis, the car is bad. We know,” Wolff said sharply. “Please drive it.” When asked about his decision to make the radio call, Wolff believed it was in "the best interests of the team". "I wanted to just make sure that we were making the best out of the package and just giving it the best shot that we had," Wolff explained to media, including RacingNews365.com . "But only for the best interests of the drivers and the team, and sometimes you have moments where you need to calm things down."

With a recently-updated W14 car, Mercedes would have had higher hopes for the race at the Red Bull Ring, but left the race weekend with just eleven points, their worst weekend haul of the season, despite the additional Sprint race. "It was a bruising day. We couldn't make the car quick. We saw it from Friday onwards that we were lacking a couple of tenths or a bit more," Wolff added. "I think the swings are quite interesting. One weekend it's us who are the first challenger [to Red Bull], and then it's Ferrari, and then it's Aston Martin, and this time we were on the back-end of the group. "We're sitting there for 90 minutes trying to optimise the strategy or getting the best of the drivers, but there's just no inherent pace. It was a tough 90 minutes for us. "I think we were predicting that Montreal would not be ideal and it was surprisingly good, then in Austria we thought that the high-speed [performance] would save our non-performance in the lower speed [corners], but it never did. "The car was never in the right place. We suffered from all of the conditions, from understeer to oversteer. It was never any good."

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