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26 June 2017, 06:34 | Laverne Osborne
Ricciardo wins chaotic Azerbaijan GP; Vettel, Hamilton clash
Vettel said Hamilton had deliberately slowed - or "brake-tested" - him.
"But I think we're gaining performance and speed to be able to compete for race wins as we're getting more and more performance of the auto".
This damaged both cars - loosening further the head-rest in Hamilton's vehicle so severely that he was ordered to pit on safety grounds for repairs - and caused Vettel to lose his temper by pulling alongside Hamilton and then turning into him.
This year's Formula One championship came alive in Azerbaijan after Sebastian Vettel was accused of deliberately ramming into title rival Lewis Hamilton.
"It cements the rivalry between the two of them for the rest of the season".
"I'll do that just with him and clear it and move on".
Vettel, who had attempted to demand an explanation for the penalty during a terse radio exchange with his Ferrari team, said that nothing had happened.
As four-time champion German Vettel woke to face the global reaction - mostly disappointment - to his actions and attitude as he sought out Hamilton's phone number for a private chat, many observers said the 10-seconds penalty he received for the incident was not enough.
At that stage, Hamilton led the street race after making a clean start from the pole position and was slowed down by the safety auto ahead of him and in attempts at avoiding crashing into the safety vehicle, the British driver slowed down at the turn.
"His restart was really good; I didn't think it was necessary. I wanted to make it clear that this was not right", he said. I don't think there is much to sort out.
When the race finally did start again - on lap 20 - Vettel just about held off the Williams cars of Felipe Massa and Stroll.
And Ferrari are backing their man, with boss spokesman Alberto Antonini saying: "We all saw what happened. If we get a penalty, we should both get a penalty". "I didn't run into the back of him on objective". Today was obviously a different Sebastian we've seen than in those eight races. I don't have a problem with him, but I think today's action was wrong.
In addition to his stop/go penalty, Vettel was also given three penalty points for the incident, taking his total to nine for the past 12 months.
"Hamilton, who fell further behind Vettel in the title race after his headset worked its way loose and forced him into an unscheduled pit stop, believes Vettel's actions were that of a man under pressure". Vettel refused to accept any blame for the incident and said he would call Hamilton to talk it over.
"They are warriors. They are at war at that moment".
"Emotions are running high, they're fighting for a world championship". "At a certain stage, the best ones that compete for world championships can't be friends".
Stewart wants to see a regular position for an ex-driver from an era closer resembling that of today's racing.
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