Brendon Hartley claims teammate Pierre Gasly ignored a Toro Rosso team order to let him through in the final stint of the Brazilian Grand Prix.
While the 2019 Red Bull driver was trying to make a one-stop strategy work, the Kiwi had been put onto a two-stop with Supersoft tyres in the closing laps to try and claim a points finish.
Of the hurdles he faced to achieve that, Gasly was expected to be the easiest, instead, Hartley would end up stuck behind the Frenchman for 10 laps.
“I was catching my teammate at a great rate of knots and I asked what would happen. So there’s obviously three different answers I’m going to get,” he explained.
“We’re racing each other, hold position or he’ll let you by. So I got the call that he would let me by. I’m also defending the car behind [Sainz] and trying to look after my tyres.
“So I didn’t attack, expecting to be let by on four or five occasions which didn’t happen. The rest I don’t know.
“But in the end I made the overtake cleanly, destroying my tyres in the meantime. But nevertheless, it didn’t bring a point.”
Gasly defended his actions, however, believing the positions they were fighting over made such a call unnecessary.
“I think it’s different if you are in the top 10, there is something to play for,” he said. “Today there wasn’t anything to play for in P11, P12, P13.
“At the end I’m a racing driver, I’m here to race, that’s what I want and that’s what I like and that’s my perception of motorsport and how it should be.”
The 22-year-old does maintain he did eventually abide by the order right at the end.
“I had to do it two laps to the end because I was running out of fuel,” Gasly revealed. “I didn’t have any fuel left for the end of the race I was just cruising the two last laps. I just think if you are in this position you should race.
“Plus he was on new super-soft tyres, I was dying with my mediums. I just told them OK, if he is faster he can overtake me but for some reason, I don’t know he didn’t do it for 10 laps.
“But then after we were in such a critical situation with the fuel that in the end, I did it two laps to go.”
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