How Hamilton dreamed of victory and ended up disqualified in the USA

This check of board wear is done randomly. After the Austin race, Verstappen and Norris’ cars were also checked.

Hamilton didn’t like Mercedes’ strategy

Before learning about the disqualification, Hamilton regretted two things: his start was not as good as Norris’, who passed pole sitter Charles Leclerc straight away. The Englishman still lost third place to Carlos Sainz, and had to pass the two Ferraris on the track.

Afterwards, Mercedes hesitated regarding its strategy, trying to assess whether it would be possible to make just one stop. They asked Hamilton to hold on on the track, but he ended up losing a lot of time and came back further behind the leaders. The Englishman took the gap, passed Norris, tried to hunt Verstappen, but there were no laps left for them to have a duel.

“Lewis was the fastest car today,” said Norris. “I was too slow in the slow corners to keep up with Max. And the hotter it is, the worse it is for us.”

Leclerc was also disqualified

Pole position, Leclerc was the only one among the first to opt for the one-stop strategy. This is because, according to Ferrari’s numbers, the tactics seemed to be similar and, when they realized that tire wear was less pronounced in the race than in the sprint, they made the decision to only stop once. “But only we did it, and it clearly wasn’t the best option, so we have to understand why our data said that.” Leclerc crossed in sixth and also had problems with the board wearing out.

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