For much of the fifth round of the season here in Barcelona it looked as though it was going to be Vettel who would extend his title lead to 20 points after executing the ideal start to leapfrog his championship rival. 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.
“That is how racing should be”, said Hamilton after recording the 55th victory of his career. “It was as close as it could be”. If he had hit me in turn one and had won the race, it would not have been “great job, Sebastian”.
You can also try out a new “Mosaic View” for the race that includes the race simulcast, in-car cameras, driver tracker and pit lane cam. It wasn’t good enough.
“This is what made me get into racing in the first place”.
“I was surprised that when I came out we were so close”, Vettel said.
Both, Hamilton and Vettel were regarded as the favourites before the starts of the tournament.
Vettel had kept his lead, but Hamilton waited for a straightaway to blow past him on his faster tires and never looked back.
Vettel said: “We’re still here so…”
“I don’t know, it’s hard to say”, he added. “I was doing what I could to say in front, but as soon as I was alone he just flew past”.
Matters were made worse by the fact Hamilton has chosen to drop his drinks bottle to save some weight, meaning he’s unable to replace any of the roughly 2kg of fluid a driver loses throughout a race.
“The respect stays the same”.
“I was eight seconds ahead and then…” This put Valtteri Bottas into the lead, though he was yet to make a pit stop. Max Verstappen, who won the race previous year, retired after a first-lap clash with Kimi Räikkönen.
Stewards investigated the incident and chose to take no further action.
Mercedes and Ferrari go head-to-head.
“I don’t think it’s impossible to catch the leaders at some point, maybe it will take a little longer than we had hoped but we will get there”. Everything clicked and came together for us.
“It’s just unfortunate”, Verstappen told Sky Sports F1.
“I gave you [Vettel] space otherwise we would have touched. I loved it. I would not change it for the world”.
Daniel Ricciardo was the one who took the final podium spot, in what was the Red Bull driver’s first top-three finish of the season.
“This feels good”, said Ricciardo. For now we take what we can and it’s nice to be up on the podium. It didn’t work, I’m not happy with that.
Fernando Alonso, who qualified seventh after a disastrous Friday practice session, could not get into the points as his nightmare campaign in the McLaren-Honda continued.
The Force India cars were great during the 2017 Spanish Grand Prix.