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Belgian Grand Prix: 'We just weren't as quick' - Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton: "I got everything that I could out of the car today but we just weren't as quick as Sebastian and Fernando."
After stealing a dramatic pole in qualifying the previous day, Lewis Hamilton was unable to reproduce such form in Sunday's race as he slipped to a third place finish at the Belgian Grand Prix.

The 28-year-old came into the weekend on a high having taken his first victory of F1 2013 in Hungary before the summer break, but despite a good start that saw him hold his lead through La Source and the run up through Eau Rouge, the Red Bull of Sebastian Vettel stormed past on the first run down the Kemmel straight to Les Combes, after which Hamilton was never able to again threaten the world championship leader for the remainder of the afternoon.

"I got everything that I could out of the car today but we just weren't as quick as Sebastian and Fernando," he admitted. "I made a nice start and it felt like the exit out of turn one was good, too. But Seb just caught me on the run out of Eau Rouge and there wasn't really much I could do to defend: I moved once, like we are allowed to, but then I just had to watch him glide by.

"From that point, it was very difficult to hold on to him, and the same thing happened with Fernando, too, later in the race," he added.

Hamilton's race wasn't helped by the absence of the forecast rain that had made the previous day's qualifying session such a chaotic and thrilling affair. Without that wild card mixing things up, Mercedes' relative lack of pace was brutally exposed by both Vettel and Alonso exposed not just by Vettel and Hamilton eventually finished almost half a minute off the leader.

"We have done a good job this weekend but Spa and Monza are always unique tracks because of the low-drag requirements," pointed out Hamilton, hopeful that this would prove to be an exception to Mercedes' season rather than rule. "I expect we will be more competitive in Singapore again. It's still a great team result to finish third with Nico right behind me in fourth."

With Kimi Raikkonen's retirement helping Hamilton take over in third place in the drivers championship exiting Spa, Mercedes team principal Ross Brawn was keen to keep things in perspective for a team that finished a lowly fifth in last season's constructor's championship.

"It is a measure of how far we have come in the past 12 months that a race which would have been our result of the season last year now feels slightly average, said Brawn. "This was a good team result, we scored a good haul of points for both championships, but we were on average half a second off the pace we needed to fight for the win at this track, especially when the tyres were new."

By Philip Barclay

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
25.08.2013-  Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W04
25.08.2013-  Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W04 leads Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W04
25.08.2013-  Race, 1st position Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB9, 2nd position Fernando Alonso (ESP) Scuderia Ferrari F138 and 3rd position Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W04
25.08.2013-  Race, 3rd position Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W04
John Watson driving the McLaren MP4B at the 1982 Caesars Palace Grand Prix, Las Vegas
Guy Moll at the 1934 Grand Prix Automobile de Montreux   [pic credit:Agence de presse Meurisse/Bibliothèque nationale de France]
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12.10.2014- Race, the start
12.10.2014- Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Infiniti Red Bull Racing RB10
12.10.2014- Vitaly Mutko (RUS) Minister of Sport of the Russian Federation
12.10.2014- Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari F14T
12.10.2014- Race, Kevin Magnussen (DEN) McLaren Mercedes MP4-29
12.10.2014- Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 in the press conference after the race
12.10.2014- Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 celebrates Manufactor title of Mercedes with the team
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August 25, 2013 9:06 PM

Seriously mate - you've got issues. If you really are a middle aged bloke, and you choose to spend hours upon hours, name calling on the internet, then you really need to ask yourself a few questions.


August 26, 2013 3:25 AM

Taipan, the fact is that Bernie and the boys wanted to spice up F1 ala Nascar. Hence the spec rules for tighter racing and such. Another thing on the agenda to spice up the show was to get the drivers more engaged with the fans. You belittle exactly what F1 is trying to accomplish. Even the podium interviews iare an attempt to draw in this FANBOY fan base. You knock a good driver all because he draws a rabid fan base. Its the new F1. Vettel dyed his hair blond but yet nothing from you on that front.

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