Strategy, teamwork help Hamilton win Spanish GP over Vettel

Strategy, teamwork help Hamilton win Spanish GP over Vettel

Lewis Hamilton cut Sebastian Vettel's lead at the top of the Formula One drivers' standings to six points as he won the Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona.

Both Raikkonen and Verstappen were unable to continue, and while Bottas solidered on - indeed he played a crucial role in assisting Hamilton's victory by holding Vettel up in the opening phase of the race - he later retired when his Mercedes engine expired.

Hamilton now started to clock lap times that were in close proximity to that of Vettel, despite the fact that the Mercedes was running on slower medium tyres.

Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen and 2016 race victor Max Verstappen of Red Bull collided on the first turn, knocking both drivers out of the race.

The next round of the season, the Monaco Grand Prix, takes place on May 28 in Monte Carlo.

"I thought Seb would get me at the end of the final stint but I was able to do it".

Bottas, who claimed his maiden F1 victory in Russian Federation last month, retired when his engine failed while he was running third.

"It was the rawest fight that I can remember having in a long time".

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"Every hit of that ball, just one misplaced, or one into the net can mean the whole game, so I admire their concentration and I felt I had that battle with Sebastian".

"I think I got the maximum out of the auto today and moving on to Monaco we will have a few more updates, which will hopefully give us another step, and at that track it's fair to say anything can happen". I don't know if I will do that again.

Previous year in Spain, the Mercedes drivers collided at the start - leaving Hamilton 43 points adrift of Rosberg.

"It was really close, I faked it on the inside, then went back on the outside and inside again, but almost lost the vehicle as I had DRS open - but it worked. [Turns to Vettel and laughs] I gave you space otherwise we would have touched!"

Bottas clipped the rear-right wheel of Raikkonen as he went down the outside of the Mercedes at the first corner and the Ferrari bounced into the Dutchman.

Hamilton took 14 seconds lead against Vettel. "I tried to brake as late as possible".

Like the first two practice sessions, Red Bull pair of Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo were fifth and sixth, respectively.

Hamilton, who has spent the last three seasons fighting team-mate Nico Rosberg for the title, said fighting a driver in a rival team and a good relationship with team-mate Valtteri Bottas is making this championship fight one of his best. We came out so close together, which was super tight into Turn 1. Bottas was later forced to stop his Mercedes when it started spouting smoke midway through the race.

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