Hamilton wins Spanish GP ahead of Vettel

Solenn Plantier
Mai 16, 2017

Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton held off Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel to win a gripping Formula One Spanish Grand Prix on Sunday.

However, Vettel can be encouraged by the fact that the difference between the victor and the second comes down to a choice of team strategy that favored Mercedes.

Pole-sitter Hamilton lost the lead to Vettel at the start only to regain the lead from the Ferrari driver in the final stages of a compelling race to seal his second victory of the year. "The vehicle was quick enough but the way the race happened, it wasn't meant to be". There was not much missing at the end.

Hamilton's win means he is now just six points behind the Ferrari man in the race for the world championship.

Equally as important, Ferrari showed that the upgrades brought by both title contenders to Spain canceled one another out.

The pair were 75 seconds ahead of Daniel Ricciardo in third place, which indicates the gulf between the two top teams and the rest of the field.

Then Vettel undertook an exciting hunt on Bottas for a whole lap before finally doubling the Finn in his third attempt, even though this tug had slowed him down and allowed Hamilton to reduce his lead.

"I probably lost two kilos just in that race", added the Mercedes driver, who revealed he had no water bottle in his auto in order to save weight. We lost four seconds.

"I was surprised that when I came out we were so close", Vettel said.

"I am not happy because the win was there", said Vettel.

"The vehicle is good, the team is in great shape. It is very close now between us". They have been proving over and over in the last few years that they are the team to beat. We have been giving them plenty of work so far. The trio of DNFs promoted him to the podium albeit 75 seconds adrift of race victor Lewis Hamilton. Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen and 2016 race victor Max Verstappen of Red Bull collided on the first turn, knocking both drivers out of the race. Bottas then immobilized his Mercedes halfway through the race when smoke appeared. While Bottas survived the incident, Raikkonen's front-left suspension was in tatters, and although Verstappen limped back to the pits his race was over, too.

"The last stint, 25 laps, when they told me they [the tyres] had to do that I didn't think.I thought at the end of the stint he would come back but we managed it."
"Outside the track we are not best friends, I have known him for a long time but I don't have a problem with him".

Hamilton, a triple champion, has had a dominant vehicle and his team mate as main rival for the past three years but Nico Rosberg's abrupt retirement after winning the 2016 title has changed that.

Hamilton finished the 66-lap contest 3.5 seconds ahead of the four-time champion German, having blasted past him to regain the lead after 44 laps. "This is what the sport needs to be every single race and this is why I race - what got me into racing".

The two fought wheel to wheel with Vettel getting the better of the exchange, before Hamilton was later able to overtake.

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