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Hamilton recovers from poor start to win Spanish Grand Prix
20 May 2017, 03:53 | Charlene Valdez
Hamilton wins Spanish GP ahead of Vettel
The victory, Hamilton's second of the season and the 55th of his career, was just what the doctor ordered after his drubbing in Russian Federation a fortnight earlier. This prompted Ferrari to try anticipating a possible Mercedes undercut and brought Vettel in for a change of tyres, taking on the Soft tyre for the middle stint.
"I don't know", said Hamilton when asked if he expected his cordial relationship with Vettel to last.
"I lost almost two kilos during the race".
"I've been racing for 24, 25 years and it feels like the first win". "Outside the track we are not best friends, I have known him for a long time but I don't have a problem with him".
Hamilton said: "Not really".
Vettel built up a strong lead, but solid pit strategy by Mercedes, a safety auto and a scarily spectacular piece of on-track aggression by Hamilton let him overtake Vettel on lap 46 and take the win. So I admire their concentration and how they are so awesome and stay at the limit.
"A lot of the races that we do with the type of racing that we sometimes have to do, where you're saving fuel, like in the last race for example [in Russia], I couldn't push because the auto was overheating".
After winning the race, Hamilton said, "The team did an incredible job today".
The Dutchman was on the outside when Kimi Raikkonen and Valtteri Bottas collided heading into Turn 1, with the Ferrari driver bouncing off the Mercedes and into Verstappen's Red Bull vehicle, eliminating both with suspension damage.
Hamilton's out-of-breath radio communication during his Spanish GP battle with Sebastian Vettel prompted questions about how physically demanding he had found the race, to which Hamilton revealed his deliberate lack of a drinks bottle.
It wasn't as happy a day for several other drivers, including Max Verstappen and Kimi Raikkonen who crashed out.
Although a five-second time penalty for failing to stay to the correct side of the pit entry bollard meant he lost that position to Carlos Sainz Jr, Wehrlein's late burst of pace meant he still secured eighth rather than falling right out of the points as initially seemed likely.
For much of the fifth round of the championship 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 flawless start to leapfrog his championship rival.
Mercedes chose to keep Hamilton out, and he immediately pumped in the fastest lap of the race and stretched his stint by an extra five laps.
"I was on the inside in Turn One and Kimi came and tried to overtake".
Drivers Sergio Perez and Estaban Ocon finished fourth and fifth respectively, the team's best performance this season securing crucial points in the fifth consecutive race.
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