Valtteri Bottas blames poor start on mystery 'clutch issues'

Polesitter Valtteri Bottas' race unravelled at the very start as he got a poor getaway which allowed Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton to get the jump on him, with the Briton then controlling the race from there on for an unchallenged victory.

Bottas blamed that poor start on "clutch" issues and "vibrations" which he says he's never experienced before.

"I mean it really is impressive what we’re doing as a team," he said of their fifth consecutive 1-2 finish. "So, for that hats off to everyone at the factory and here.

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"It’s honestly very annoying today. I lost it at the start and, looking back I can say it’s not my fault. I had some issues with the clutch, some vibrations, which I’ve never had before. That’s why I got away slow. I’m keen to find out what happened."

The Finn insists his race was decided at the first corner as passing a driver with equal machinery and on the same strategy in Barcelona is almost impossible.

"It’s quite a lot easier in the front, you can control the pace and when you’re behind you’re trying to keep up, and dirty air at this kind of track you’re sliding around.

"So, I was expecting the race to be kind of decided into the first corner. Even though you try for the opportunities, it was game over."