Vettel still confident despite Hamilton's win at Spanish GP

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton celebrates at Circuit de Catalunya in Montmelo Spain

Vettel had beaten polesitter Hamilton into Turn 1, but the pace of the Mercedes driver behind forced Ferrari into an earlier-than-anticipated stop for soft tyres on lap 14.

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes driver, won the Spanish Grand Prix, after an excellent race, which was marked with a clash between him and Sebastian Vettel, from Ferrari, and a big turbulence after the start.

The race started with Lewis Hamilton on pole, ahead of Sebastian Vettel, Valtteri Bottas and Kimi Raikkonen.

"I think it was just the rawest fight that I can remember having for some time for which I loved".

"I think we can be very happy, but today we're not entirely happy because the win was there", Vettel said. "I just really have to congratulate and thank my team".

"It's great to have a battle and a fight with another team is so much nicer and more enjoyable because there's no tension within our team".

Hamilton won by a healthy 3.49 seconds second from Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel after a breathtaking duel to cut the German's championship lead to six ponts.

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 ago. Fernando Alonso crossed the line in 12th - his first finish of the season - but there was more misery for Britain's Jolyon Palmer, who limped home last. Following Vettel and Hamilton were Kimi Raikkonen, Max Verstappen and Bottas as they tried to enter together in the first corner. I got a bit fortunate with Valtteri's problem towards the end of the race which bumped me up to third, but of course I'm still happy to be up there again and see all the smiles from the team. Hamilton made it past, took the lead and never looked back.

Those seconds meant that when Vettel emerged from a second pit stop he was neck-and-neck with a hard-charging Hamilton.

Meanwhile, the battle between Hamilton and Vettel raged on.

Vettal did all he could to beat Hamilton with a thrilling move to pass Bottas that will be replayed for some time to come.

While Vettel used his two sets of faster tires first before finishing on the more long-lasting but slower ones, Hamilton used his more conservative tires after his first pit stop, allowing him to finish on the faster set.

"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 vehicle was overheating". I don't know if we touched, but I managed to stay ahead.

The Force India duo of Sergio Perez and Esteban Ocon finished astern in fourth and fifth.

Alonso starred on Saturday, qualifying seventh for McLaren Honda, but must be looking for reliability to come to translate that into his first points finish of 2017.



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