Lewis Hamilton WINS Canadian Grand Prix in a Mercedes One-Two - Vettel 4th
- Author: Julie Sanders Jun 16, 2017,
Jun 16, 2017, 20:04
The four-time champion was last in the opening stages of Sunday's race after he was forced to change his front wing following contact with Red Bull's Max Verstappen at Turn One. "I wasn't quick in Russian Federation so for us getting the auto where we need it is going to be a challenge", he said. "Every year the energy grows!"
"I'd equalled Ayrton in race wins (41) a while ago so this was the focus for me". I have done my job, and we as a team, have done the best we could do, too. "I really have to thank my team for making this possible".
The German's comeback drive to fourth was, however, damage limitation of the highest entity, and Hamilton was still wary of the Scuderia's threat despite Mercedes securing their first one-two finish of 2017 to lead the constructors' standings.
Owing to Ocon's fresher tyres, the team wanted Perez to give away his position to his younger team mate so that he can attack Ricciardo and try to get a podium finish.
"I know he's had such a hard season", Hamilton told Sky Sports F1.
The Ferrari driver, who has seen his 25-point advantage reduced to just 12 following Hamilton's victory at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, recovered to fourth, which included two passing moves on the Force India duo of Esteban Ocon and Sergio Perez in the closing laps.
The safety vehicle came out on the opening lap when, on the first turn, Romain Grosjean's Haas nudged Carlos Sainz's Toro Rosso, which plowed into the side of Stroll's Williams teammate Felipe Massa. "Lewis delivered a stellar performance this weekend with a pole lap that was nearly scary when you watch the onboard, and then a totally dominant race".
Despite coming to one of his favourite circuits, Hamilton went into the weekend with more questions than answers about the Monaco meltdown but Sunday provided plenty of comfort.
"I think for us, we really solidified our strength, we've got a better understanding of the vehicle and hope we can put it in the same spot in the following races", he told Sky Sports television.
"More importantly for us, we've got a better understanding of the auto and hopefully we can put it in the same spot for the coming races - we know now after the last race where to develop this vehicle moving forward and that is going to really make a difference in winning this championship". Hamilton also clocked the race's fastest lap time.
"I think Mercedes was very strong, but then they had a completely different race", Vettel said.
Sainz was given a three-spot grid penalty for the next race, in Azerbaijan, for his role in the crash that knocked him and Massa from the race and left Romain Grosjean with front wing damage. Nonetheless, Vettel is still twelve points ahead of Hamilton and his efforts today may well prove to have been decisive as their tight championship battle develops. One of the problems was the wind tunnel gave them one reading and the simulator gave them a different and along with that a mistake in setting up their vehicle which prevented them getting Pirelli's supersoft and ultrasoft tires working in their limited temperature windows.
With two laps to go, Vettel, a man inspired, passed Perez at the final chicane to snatch fourth.