The race in Budapest was red-flagged after two separate incidents on the opening lap.

Valtteri Bottas hit the back of Lando Norris’ McLaren into Turn 1, spearing him into the Red Bull duo, while Lance Stroll crashed into Charles Leclerc, spinning Daniel Ricciardo around in the process.

With the track littered with debris and four cars already out of the race, proceedings were halted for 20 minutes.

The rain had stopped when the second formation lap was underway meaning the track was drying quickly.

13 of the 14 remaining runners decided to pit before the second standing start, leaving Hamilton to take to the grid by himself before switching to slicks a lap later.

The delayed stop dropped him to 14th, before recovering to third.

Reflecting on the decision to keep Hamilton out, Wolff told Sky Sports F1: “To be honest I think we did absolutely the right thing. There’s no one in the team that would have done otherwise.

“As a leading car, it’s always difficult to take the decision and if you’re the only one pitting and you come out last, and there’s the difficulty in getting out of the pits then as everybody is pitting and now it looked like we were a bit lonely there on the grid and it played against us.

“With the sun it dried up so quickly that within a lap actually, it was dry. These things can happen, I stand absolutely by the decision to stay out and that’s why I am fine. We could have gambled as the leading car and come in with also a disastrous outcome and then if that would have happened people would have said that we’d have made a mistake so it was the right decision.”

Hamilton felt it was dry conditions but decided to rely on the team as he thought they had more information about the weather.

“I was telling the team how the track was through the lap,” he added. “But they said the rain was coming at us when we got in the car, so I thought they had other information and I saw everyone diving in.”