Shanghai: Post race reactions
After securing his fourth victory at the Chinese Grand Prix on Sunday, Hamilton felt his finish behind a safety car was something of an anti-climax.
The Briton finished ahead of team-mate Nico Rosberg and Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel on the podium, but an engine failure for Max Verstappen on the pit straight ensured the race ended with the safety car out.
“First of all a fantastic job by team. It was great to have a smooth weekend,” explained Hamilton, who leads the standings by 13 points after three races, on the podium. “It was about controlling the gap for me and saving tyres for when I needed them. The safety car wasn’t helpful as it was an anti-climax but as long as no-one was hurt then that’s the important thing.”
Rosberg hits out at Hamilton in post-race press conference. With Hamilton sitting alongside him, Rosberg accused Hamilton of slowing him down.
“It’s interesting to hear from you Lewis that you were just thinking about yourself with the pace. Unnecessarily that was compromising my race, because driving slower than was maybe necessary at the beginning of stints meant that Sebastian was very close to me and that opening up the opportunity for Sebastian to try that early pit stop, to try and jump me. I was unnecessarily close to Sebastian as a result and it cost me race time as a result.”
Vettel’s third consecutive podium puts him second overall, with Ferrari and Mercedes already beginning to pull away at the top of the constructors’ standings.
“It was a good race. All-in-all we were a bit close on softer tyres to Mercedes. On the harder tyres they were just that bit too quick. I’m very happy. It’s been three out of three podiums so it’s been good. I feel really happy in the team and, hopefully, we’ll get a bit closer to challenging Mercedes,” added the former Red Bull man.