Lewis Hamilton wins F1 Spanish Grand Prix thriller

Lewis Hamilton wins F1 Spanish Grand Prix thriller

Lewis Hamilton passed Vettel on last 44 after trailing the Ferrari from the start.

Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel finished P2 in Sunday's race, and says the time lost racing Valtteri Bottas played a part in him eventually losing out to victor Lewis Hamilton.

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton won the Spanish GP after an exciting battle with Ferrari rival Sebastian Vettel.

"It's definitely one of the favourites if not the favourite [battle] I'm having", said the three-time world champion and two-time runner up. I locked up and don't know if we touched but I managed to say ahead.

Hamilton appeared to have been rendered breathless by the gripping duel at one stage, the Englishman panting on the team radio, although he had recovered sufficiently to praise the contest after the race.

"The laps after I was doing everything to stay in front".

It was Hamilton's second win of the season, and cuts Vettel's lead to six points as the big two pull clear of the pack in what's looking to be a dramatic fight for the 2017 championship.

"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".

That helped Hamilton close in, and he made his final stop before Vettel. "So obviously it's nice to have close battles but you want to have them in your favour at the end of the race which today wasn't the case, but that's how it goes sometimes".

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 collision damaged the front suspensions of both cars, knocking Raikkonen off the track and forcing Verstappen to hobble back to the garage for good.

Hamilton would not be denied for long, however, and he got close enough to use a DRS boost and surge past Vettel with 22 laps to go.

"An unfortunate start to the race which ultimately finished it also", Verstappen said. "They did a wonderful job with the strategy and the pit stops".

"This is one of the hardest races, to keep up with him, he drove fantastically well so it's such a privilege to race against him".

Teammate Bottas retired his Mercedes with a blown engine, letting the lone Red Bull inherit third place.

Speaking to Sky F1, Mercedes chief Toto Wolff said: "His race was pretty much gone after contact in Turn One". His best result was third place in China, with two more fifth-place finishes when he has stayed on the track.

Following Ricciardo were the two Force India drivers of Sergio Perez and Esteban Ocon, maintaining the team's 100 percent record of scoring points with both cars in every race this season.

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