Lewis Hamilton thanked his team for giving him the opportunity to fight for the victory in Sunday’s Canadian Grand Prix, but the reigning World Champion says the way the win has handed to him was not how he would have wanted it to happen.
The Mercedes AMG Motorsport had one of his tougher weekends of the season so far but came away with his fifth win in seven races despite finishing second on the road to Scuderia Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel, with the German having been handed a five-second time penalty for re-joining the circuit in an unsafe manner following a trip across the grass at turn three on lap forty-eight.
Hamilton felt the pressure he put onto Vettel caused the mistake that ultimately defined the result, but even then he wanted to win the race in the right way by passing the German on track, something he was unable to do due to the state of his tyres towards the end of the very hot race.
“It’s not easy to follow around here, so I was trying to build the pressure on Sebastian to maybe push him into an error and he made one,” said Hamilton. “I still wanted to win the right way and overtake him on the track, so I was fighting until the finish line, but my tyres were gone.
“Ferrari did a fantastic job this weekend, they were so fast on the straights and Sebastian drove a great race, it took absolutely everything from me to try and keep up with them.
“It’s not a great feeling and ultimately that’s not how I want to win races, but I drove my heart out today to make my team proud and I feel like I did that.”
Hamilton was pleased to give Mercedes something to cheer after a crash in practice left him on the backfoot and a worrying technical issue on Sunday morning that required some urgent repairs ahead of the race. He thanked the team for the fix and believes giving them the result in Canada was good reward for their hard work.
“I’m really, really grateful – I had a crash on Friday, so I was on the backfoot, and then this morning we had an engine problem,” said Hamilton. “The guys worked so hard and did a great job to fix it, so they truly deserved to have a car out there.
“I was trying to drive for them and really wanted to get the best result I can for them.