The Mercedes Formula 1 team has identified the problem which forced Valtteri Bottas to retire from the Eifel Grand Prix.

Having lost the lead of the race to Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton after a mistake, Bottas reported a loss of power shortly after an early Virtual Safety Car period and began to slip down the order.

Mercedes decided to retire Bottas’ car from the race as it feared allowing him to continue could cause irreparable mechanical damage to his power unit and result in a component change and subsequent grid drop.

The German manufacturer initially suspected the issue was relating to the MGU-H, but following an investigation, Mercedes has diagnosed a failed electrical component in the Control Electronics to be the cause.

Mercedes believes that its swift action in retiring the car successfully prevented further damage to Bottas’ power unit.

Bottas’ first retirement of the season acted as a huge blow to his title hopes, with the Finn falling 69 points behind Hamilton in the championship standings heading into this weekend’s Portuguese Grand Prix.

“It was undoubtedly a tough blow at this stage of the season,” Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff said.

“We have identified a failed electrical component in the Control Electronics as the cause of the problem and the evidence suggests that swift action in retiring the car prevented mechanical damage to his Power Unit.

“A DNF is always tough for a driver, but one of Valtteri’s biggest strengths is his resilience and his ability to bounce back, so I’m sure he’ll be eager to hit the track in Portugal.”