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Say what? The best of race radio in Great Britain

12 Jul 2016

Team radio was the hot topic of conversation at Silverstone on Sunday evening, but Mercedes' 'instructions' to Nico Rosberg weren't the only memorable soundbites from Britain...

"Gearbox problem." (Rosberg)
"Driver default 1-0-1. Chassis default 0-1, chassis default 0-1." (Mercedes)
Where else to start than the radio messages that followed Nico Rosberg's sudden gearbox issues? Stuck in seventh, the above was deemed legal as it prevented a terminal failure - but there is a sting in the tail...

"Avoid seventh gear Nico, avoid seventh." (Mercedes)
"So what does that mean, I have to shift through it?" (Rosberg)
"Affirm Nico, you need to shift through it."
The message that landed Mercedes in trouble with the stewards, and brought Rosberg's championship lead over team mate Lewis Hamilton down to just one point.

"I don't know if the car is okay. I guess so! What a shame."

Long before Rosberg's drama, McLaren's Fernando Alonso pirouettes twice through the gravel at Abbey, hits the wall - and yet still somehow escapes.

"Can you get the car going Rio?"
"No. No, I'm in the barrier."
Rio Haryanto is another to spin at Abbey - but unlike Alonso, he can't rescue the mistake and retires from the race.

"I'm out. Aquaplaning first corner - no chance!"

It's not the greatest day for Manor - Pascal Wehrlein was the race's first casualty after spinning sideways and into a gravel-bed retirement on just his second pass through Abbey.

"For info, Ericsson is out the car and walking around. He hit the wall quite hard, but he's out the car."
(Red Bull)
The biggest crash of the weekend comes in FP3 as Marcus Ericsson gets it wrong at Stowe, with the wreckage of his Sa prompting concern from his fellow drivers.

"There is quite a bit of standing water around Turn 8, also on the Wellington Straight..."
"There are big puddles of aquaplaning..." (Hamilton)
Conditions are tricky throughout the weekend, but particularly so in the early race laps due to the sheer amount of rainfall, as two of the most senior members of the field point out.

"Can we go Charlie?!"

After four laps behind the safety car, however, Hamilton is itching to get away, leading to this pointed message to race director Charlie Whiting. He makes good on the statement too with a blistering first lap which is more than 2s faster than the rest of the field.

"How far from dry tyres do you think it is?"
(Force India)
"Ohh very far..." (Hulkenberg)

"Inters or extremes?"
(Red Bull)
"If we can survive the aquaplaning, I think inters." (Ricciardo)
With the safety car in, teams' collective attention turns to track conditions - with both Nico Hulkenberg and Daniel Ricciardo among those to be bold by making an early stop for inters.

"Oh this is a joke!"

Jolyon Palmer's stop doesn't exactly go to plan though: Renault release him without a rear tyre, and the delay - and subsequent penalty - means he rejoins one lap down and with blue flags flying, much to the Briton's annoyance.

"We lost so many positions! We need to stop one of the two cars - we are two cars copying each other instead of racing the others."

Alonso isn't too happy either to see team mate Jenson Button following him into the pits on lap 17, suggesting McLaren should be gambling with strategy more to try and spring an upset.

"I'm struggling quite a bit with the rear..."
"That's moving twice! That's not on!" (Rosberg)
Mid-way through the race and Max Verstappen mounts an increasingly robust defence of second - which doesn't go down all that well with the pursuing Rosberg.

"Okay Max, Rosberg is under investigation for some comments made over the radio."

Rosberg eventually gets past Verstappen with a fantastic move at Stowe - but it is the Dutchman who ultimately has the last laugh long after the chequered flag has waved...

"I think something failed with the gearbox. Engine off."
(Vettel in FP1)
"Okay, I think we failed the gearbox again..." (Vettel in FP3)
Sebastian Vettel has minimal presence in this week's Say What?, as early gearbox issues lead to a grid penalty and a very low-key race to ninth for Ferrari.

"**** so hard to drive..."
"It's blocking, blocking - **** penalty..."

Toro Rosso's Daniil Kvyat, meanwhile, makes a late entry as he turns the air blue on Friday and Saturday afternoon in Silverstone.

"Well done Max, that was a great drive. Loved your move around the outside of Becketts - the highlight of the race."
(Christian Horner)
"It was an interesting race! We challenged them, and had great pace." (Verstappen)
For another Red Bull young gun though there is only elation, as Max Verstappen delivers a brilliant drive to second - complete with this around-the-outside pass on Rosberg.

"Great job this weekend guys! Right now I'm thinking about all the people!"

As ever, the final word goes to the winner - and Lewis Hamilton can't stop smiling as hundreds of thousands of fans are on their feet in celebration of his third straight triumph on home soil.