Lewis Hamilton praises Valtteri Bottas' role in Hungarian GP win

Lewis Hamilton claims faultless win at Hungarian GP

Lewis Hamilton claims faultless win at Hungarian GP

After Bottas's early stop (to cover Raikkonen's) and Hamilton's stop on lap 25, the next stage of Vettel's race was all about the gap to Bottas.

Hamilton won the grand prix to extend his lead in the championship to 24 points. Bottas' longer second stint had hampered his own race prospects but prevented Vettel from attacking Hamilton with a significant tyre advantage, which provd to be decisive in the outcome of the race.

The story of 2018 season so far, as expected, is between Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton and Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel.

Bottas, who lost part of his front wing, finished fifth after a late collision with Daniel Ricciardo, who then overtook the Finn on the final lap in his second shot at the wounded Mercedes auto.

The victory was Hamilton's record sixth in Hungary, fifth of the season and 67th of his career.

Daniel Ricciardo said he would "have something soon" with regards to news on his future in June, while Red Bull team principal Christian Horner claimed it would be sorted "pretty quickly" ahead of the German Grand Prix, but there has still been no official announcement. Bottas, on the inside, went straight on and into the back of Vettel.

With just five laps remaining, Vettel pulled off a move on Bottas, passing him on the outside heading to Turn 2.

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"The second half of the season is always intense, but it is usually when it gets a bit better on our side", he said, referring to his Mercedes team, in the aftermath of their polished triumph at the Hungaroring.

"We knew the Ferraris would be quick and they have been strong for the last three or four races". I don't believe there's ever a moment that you've got your hands on the title or the trophy.

Hamilton is 17 points clear of Vettel in the standings after 11 races, with Sunday's round the last before the sport's August break. "I think we could have gone with Lewis today with the race pace", said Vettel. "But what's really important is that we continue to keep up the pressure and keep working as we have done until now".

The start was a good one for Hamilton, who launched from the first place, while Valterri Bottas (Finland, Mercedes) passed Kimi Raikkonnen. Vettel was now only a couple of second off Bottas and only passed the Finn when the latter chose to pit on Lap 15, a lap after Raikkonen.

Bottas put his prang with Vettel down to a racing incident and felt there was little he could have done to avoid the crash with Ricciardo.

"I thought it was likely he would get a penalty but I really wanted to pass him on track, which fortunately I could do on the last lap".

"I just don't have that grip", Hamilton, who also spun, said over the team radio in response to being told Vettel's fastest time.

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