Hamilton: Kimi said sorry, I accept it and we move on

Formula 1 champion Lewis Hamilton has accepted an apology from Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen and recognised that their first lap collision in Sunday’s British Grand Prix was a racing incident and not deliberate.

The Mercedes driver, who fought back from last to second after being sent spinning at the third corner by the veteran Finn, had spoken immediately after the race of the Italian team’s ‘interesting tactics’.

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff had suggested two collisions between Ferraris and his cars in three races were either deliberate or incompetent.

Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel also collided with Mercedes Valtteri Bottas in France last month.

“Kimi said sorry and I accept it and we move on. It was a racing incident and nothing more,” Hamilton posted on Instagram. “Sometimes we say dumb shit and we learn from it.”

Wolff’s comments had angered Ferrari principal Maurizio Arrivabene, particularly as he had referenced former Ferrari technical director James Allison, who is now working for Mercedes. “In James Allison’s words, ‘do you think it is deliberate or incompetence?’. So this leaves us with a judgement,” the Austrian had said.

Arrivabene told Sky Italia after the race that Allison should be ashamed if he had said that, “We’re here in England, sometimes they want to teach us how to be gentlemen, and he should start first. Really, this annoyed me so much.”

“It’s been a beautiful battle, a battle that I think the audience appreciated, there will be other battles where most likely Mercedes will win and this is a lesson for us to stay classy, a thing that they haven’t done today.”

Mercedes defended Allison on Twitter, emphasising he had not spoken to media and there had merely been a ‘jokey conversation’ during the race that Wolff repeated and that had been misinterpreted.

“We know it was just a stupid mistake on Kimi’s part. Like Seb in France. It’s the race but it’s still annoying twice on three GPs,” the team said.

Vettel now leads the championship standings by eight points and Ferrari top the constructors’ table by 20, leads that increased at Silverstone, the tenth round of the championship.

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Mallya: They want to hang me on the holy cross

Embattled Indian tycoon and Force India owner Vijay Mallya said on Sunday he will comply fully with court enforcement officers seeking to seize his British assets, but there was not much for them to take as his family’s lavish residences were not in his name.

India wants to extradite the 62-year-old former liquor baron from Britain to face charges of fraud as a group of Indian banks seek to recover more than $1 billion (752.45 million pounds) of loans granted to his defunct Kingfisher Airlines.

A verdict is expected by early September, with July 31 the final date for closing oral submissions and appeals likely whatever the outcome.

Speaking to Reuters at the British Grand Prix, where he is principal and co-owner of the Force India team, Mallya said he would hand over British assets held in his name. But a luxury country residence belonged to his children and a house in London belonged to his mother, making them untouchable.

“I have given the UK court on affidavit a statement of my UK assets. Which, pursuant to the freezing order, they are entitled to take and hand over to the banks,” he said. “There’s a few cars, a few items of jewellery and I said ‘OK, fine. You don’t have to bother to come to my house to seize them. I’ll physically hand them over. Tell me the time, date and place.’”

“There’s no question of being homeless because at the end of the day, they are entitled to take my assets in my name declared on oath to the court. They can’t go one step beyond,” added the man branded a ‘fugitive’ by his country.

Mallya said a super-yacht he used for entertaining at races in Monaco and Abu Dhabi, which was recently sold at auction in Malta after a dispute over unpaid crew wages, was not his problem either.

“I have not owned the Indian Empress boat for more than seven years now,” he said. It had belonged to “a Middle Eastern gentleman”, whose name he would not disclose, in a deal that gave Mallya use of it for one month a year, he said.

Mallya has been in Britain since he left India in March 2016, unable to travel after his passport was revoked, so the annual British Grand Prix is the only race he has been able to attend since then.

The Indian government’s Enforcement Directorate, which fights financial crimes, is seeking to declare him a “fugitive economic offender” and to confiscate 125 billion rupees worth of his assets.

Mallya has denied the charges, decried a “political witchhunt” and has said he is seeking to sell assets worth about 139 billion rupees ($2.04 billion) to repay creditors.

“I think the overriding consideration that everybody seems to be missing is that I have put $2 billion worth of assets in front of the Karnataka high court which is more than sufficient to repay the banks and indeed everybody else. So the question of attaching assets either in the UK or whatever should not arise.”

Mallya repeated recent complaints on Twitter that Indian criminal enforcement agencies had frozen assets in India so he could not sell them, while banks continued to tot up interest.

He said the enforcement directorate had also attached assets inherited from his father, including properties acquired in the 1920s, under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, “How can those be proceeds of crime? This is the injustice that is happening.”

The former billionaire, at one time dubbed the ‘King of Good Times’ and a former member of the upper house of the Indian parliament.

“I was always a resident of England and a non-resident of India. So where else do I come back to? So where’s the running away concept? It’s just become too political.”

“And now in an (Indian) election year, I guess what they want to do is bring me back and hang me on the holy cross and hope to get more votes,” lamented the tycoon.

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F2 Silverstone: Ferrucci banned for ramming teammate

CIRCUIT PAUL RICARD, FRANCE - JUNE 21: Santino Ferrucci (USA, Trident) during the Paul Ricard at Circuit Paul Ricard on June 21, 2018 in Circuit Paul Ricard, France. (Photo by Joe Portlock / LAT Images)

Formula 2 driver Santino Ferrucci was fined and banned for four races on Sunday for crashing into his Trident teammate Arjun Maini, driving the car with a mobile phone in his hand and refusing to attend stewards’ hearings.

Stewards fined the 20-year-old American, who is a development driver for the U.S.-owned Haas Formula 1 team, 66,000 euros (£58,216.05) and disqualified him from Sunday’s race at Silverstone.

He was banned from the next two rounds in Hungary and Belgium, four races in all.

Formula 2 is an acknowledged feeder series for Formula 1, with races run after Saturday qualifying and before Sunday’s grand prix.

Race organisers said Ferrucci had deliberately driven into the rear of Maini’s car on the cooldown lap. He also forced Maini off the road during the race.

Maini said over the radio “there is something wrong with my team-mates brain.”

Ferrucci then replied to Maini on tweet: “The one crying on the radio. I just did my drugs test so I’m all clear ;)”.

The stewards at Silverstone heard testimony from the Trident team that Ferrucci driving into Maini was premeditated.

Trident responded on Twitter stating: “Trident intends to show their solidarity and support to @ArjunMaini_ and his family, for the unsportsmanlike and above all uncivilized behaviour that he was forced to endure not only during this last weekend by Santino Ferrucci and father, who accompanied him.

“The contractual implications of what has happened will be dealt with by our lawyers. Never in these 12 years of sporting activity has anything even close to this ever occurred. We apologize for the show that we have regretfully offered.”

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Vettel: Silly to think that anything was deliberate

British Grand Prix winner Sebastian Vettel scoffed at suggestions by Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes questioned if Ferrari used ‘dirty tactics’ when Kimi Raikkonen collided with Lewis Hamilton on the opening lap of the race at Silverstone.

The incident put paid to Hamilton’s ambition of winning a record-breaking home race as he was forced to recover from the back of the field, storming through to claim second place.

Limiting the damage while his arch-rival Vettel bagged max points to take his lead in the drivers’ standings to eight and the Reds extending their gap at the top of constructors’ points standings after ten rounds

Hamilton was incensed and skipped the post-race trackside interviews with Martin Brundle, before saying on the podium, “Interesting tactics I would say from this side.”

After the race, Mercedes chief Toto Wolff quoted his tech boss James Allison, who has worked at Maranello and with Raikkonen, asking: “Do you think it is deliberate or incompetence?”

But Vettel rubbished the theory, “It’s silly to think that anything happened was deliberate. I don’t think there was an intention and I think it’s unnecessary to even go there.”

Raikkonen accepted responsibility and the 10-second penalty for his actions, “He spun, it was my bad but that is how it goes sometimes. It was not a straightforward race. It was my mistake so that was fine. That is how it goes.”

2009 F1 World Champion, Jenson Button, making a welcome return to the grand prix paddock as an enthusiastic pundit, said of the incident, “It’s definitely not intentional. This is not the way anyone goes racing anymore. But it’s tough and there is high tension.”

“It’s not easy to overtake in a Formula 1 car and they’re trying to make those moves stick on lap one. They made mistakes but that’s what racing is all about. You try not to but sometimes you slip up, it doesn’t always go your way,” added Button.

Vettel departs Silverstone leading the championship from Hamilton by eight points and Mercedes trailing the Reds by 20 in the constructors’ title race.

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Vettel breaks British hearts to win incident packed race

Sebastian Vettel broke the collective hearts of Britsh fans when he spoiled the party at the British Grand Prix, taking a well-deserved victory while Lewis Hamilton recovered from an early spin and proceeded to storm through the field from the back to claim second place in an incident-packed race at Silverstone.

It was a race of two halves which began with a poor start by pole-sitter Lewis Hamilton, which turned into a shambolic first lap which not only tripped him up but also accounted for others.

The ‘race’ really began after the second of two safety car periods that concertina-ed the field and led to an enthralling four-way shootout between the two Ferrari drivers and the Mercedes duo in the final ten laps of the race.

Bottas led when Bernd Maylander peeled the safety car into the pits with, with Vettel on fresh tyres tucked in behind the leading Mercedes as he waited until DRS was available to pounce and take the lead with a fine move to claim the lead and maximum points.

This threw Bottas, who had driven impeccably all afternoon, thereafter he tripped up and slipped back further as Hamilton got past to claim second place and Raikkonen muscling past his fellow Finn to snatch third place.

Ferrari were quick and shrewd to bring Vettel and Raikkonen in when the first safety car appeared, swapping the Pirelli mediums for fresh softs. Mercedes kept both their cars out.

When unleashed, after the safety car, the difference in rubber told. Vettel was unstoppable once DRS was enabled and then swooped on the brakes at the end of the Wellington Straight to take the lead from Bottas and bag maximum points not long after.

Vettel said afterwards, “Obviously the Safety Car spiced it up. I think I surprised Valtteri and I wasn’t sure I’d make the corner but I did and it worked really well. I’m very, very happy.”

“Big thanks to the team for supporting me and also people in the background because yesterday I was a bit damaged. Today it was no problem.”

“With all the adrenaline going it was fine. Probably I will feel it tonight but it doesn’t matter, the tape held up. I enjoyed the race a lot and I think the people enjoyed a lot.”

“A great day,” concluded Vettel who now leads the championship by eight points after ten rounds and adds a second British Grand Prix winner’s trophy to the one he won in 2009 with Red Bull.

From pole, Hamilton was tardy off the line and slipped down to fourth but was tagged by the front of Raikkonen’s Ferrari, which spun him around and turned his afternoon to one of damage control which he managed admirably to finish second.

However his scything through the field highlight the enormous deficit between the Mercedes, indeed the same with Ferrari drivers, as powered past Merc customers and the Renaults with consummate ease. Formula 1 has two distinct divisions with a widening gap between the haves and the nots.

Hamilton questioned strategy used by the Reds, “Interesting tactics I would say from this side [looking at Ferrari drivers] but we’ll do what we can to fight them and improve in next races. This is the greatest race of the year and this is the greatest crowd.”

“I’m sorry I wasn’t able to bring it home for you today but thanks for the support. It’s you guys that helped me get through today We’ll take it on the chin, keep pushing hard, but believe me I will not give up.”

Bottas did not put a foot wrong all day until he allowed Hamilton through late in the race, thereafter his tyres simply had no answer to Raikkonen’s Ferrari on fresh softs.

Raikkonen summed up, “I tried. Obviously, my view is I did the best I could but there seems to be an awfully opposite look at what I’m doing, unfortunately.”

Of the lap one incident with Hamilton the veteran said, “My bad, but that’s how it goes sometimes. It was my mistake, so that’s fine. I deserve it, I took the 10 seconds and got fighting.”

Max Verstappen looked good for a podium at one point, but in the wake of three impressive race weekends (winning in Austria last Sunday) he spun out of contention late in the race when the Red Bull suffered brake failure in Turn 16 on lap 48.

Teammate Daniel Ricciardo, who was edged by his younger teammate all weekend was rewarded with fifth place.

Nico Hulkenberg benefitted from the Haas pair tripping up at the start, kept it clean to claim sixth place and Best of the Rest in a car that clearly was no match for the big three.

In seventh place, Esteban Ocon had a strong race on the doorstep of the Force India factory at Silverstone, his teammate Sergio Perez was 11th.

McLaren’s Fernando Alonso turned 17th on the grid to eighth in the race after another gutsy race peppered with choice radio chatter. Teammate Stoffel Vandoorne was 12th.

Magnussen recovered from his first lap incident to take ninth on a day in which Haas rightfully expected much more from their drivers.

Romain Grosjean virtually signed his F1 departure papers with another woeful weekend, involved in the first lap scuffle with his teammate he then tangled with Carlos Sainz late in the race when heading for sure points.

Williams were slowest of all, finishing their home race with Lance Stroll in 13th and Sergey Sirtokin 14th. A miserable day for the once mighty British team.

FIA Blow-By-Blow Report

At the start, Vettel got away superbly to take the lead ahead of pole position man Hamilton. The Briton’s team-mate Bottas also swept past and Hamilton found himself third as the field went through Abbey.

The situation was then made worse for Hamilton as Raikkonen braked too late and collided with the right rear of the Mercedes. Hamilton spun off track and dropped to 17th place. Raikkonen later received a 10-second time penalty for causing the collision.

At the front, Vettel was free to pull away and by lap eight the German had built a 5.7s lead over Bottas, with Verstappen a further four seconds behind. Raikkonen was now fourth ahead of Ricciardo and the Renault of Hulkenberg.

However, Hamilton was powering through the pack, and on lap eight he had climbed back to eighth place behind Leclerc. He was, however, now 25.7s behind Vettel. He made light work of passing the Monegasque and then breezed past Hulkenberg on lap 10 to sit 13.0 behind fifth-placed Ricciardo.

Raikkonen pitted on lap 13 to serve his penalty and after the hold he took on medium tyres to emerge in 10th place.

Verstappen was the next to pit, on lap 17, with the Dutchman also taking medium tyres. The Red Bull driver emerged in fifth place.

Behind him, Raikkonen was now on a march and in short order he dismissed Sainz, Ocon, Leclerc and Hulkenberg to sit in sixth place ahead of the next pit stop, on lap 18, for Ricciardo.

Leclerc was the next to visit pit lane but immediately after his pit stop he reported a problem and he was told to stop his Sauber. He pulled off track at Turn 3 where his strong run of recent points finishes ended.

Vettel then pitted on lap 20, taking on medium tyres. He rejoined in the lead and after Bottas made his stop the German led ahead of the Finn and Hamilton. Hamilton was now 5.8s behind the championship leader but he required a pit stop.

That stop arrived on lap 25, with the Mercedes driver taking on mediums. He rejoined the action on sixth place, 11s behind Raikkonen and 28.2s behind race leader Vettel.

The German was now 3.5s clear of Bottas, with Verstappen almost 10 seconds further back and with Ricciardo fourth ahead Raikkonen.

Bottas then began to close up to Vettel and on lap 30 the gap was down to 2.8s. Hamilton too was picking up the pace and by lap 30 he was running quickest and closing in on Raikkonen.

Red Bull then pitted Ricciardo for a second time on lap 30, with the Australian taking on a fresh set of soft tyres. He rejoined in sixth place, behind Hamilton, who was now just 4.9s behind Raikkonen.

The complexion of the race changed completely on lap 32. Marcus Ericsson overcooked his entry to Turn 1 and he lost the front end of his car. He spun and careered off track and into the barriers.

The safety car was immediately deployed and during the caution, Vettel, Verstappen and Raikkonen all pitted for fresh soft tyres as the field bunched up.

Bottas now led the race behind the SC, with Vettel second ahead of Hamilton, Verstappen, Raikkonen and Ricciardo.

On the restart Bottas held his advantage ahead of Vettel and Hamilton, bit behind them Raikkonen attacked Verstappen. He passed the Dutchman but the Red Bull driver returned the favour in the next corner and he held onto fourth place.

The Safety Car was almost immediately deployed again as behind the leaders Sainz tried to pass Grosjean in to Copse. It was tight, with Sainz leaving little room, and the result was that the Frenchman clipped the back of the Renault and they both went off track and out of the race.

The Safety Car left the track at the end of lap 41 and Bottas again held the lead ahead of Vettel and Hamilton, with Verstappen fourth ahead of Raikkonen and Ricciardo.

Vettel than began to exert pressure on Bottas and after a long tussle the German managed to sneak past the Finn with a good move under braking into Brooklands.

Behind them Verstappen spun and then retired from the race.

Bottas, whose tyres were fading, was then passed by Hamilton and he quickly slipped into the clutches of Raikkonen who brushed past his compatriot to take P3.

And that was the way it stayed with Vettel crossing the line ahead of Hamilton to take his 51st career win, putting him tied third with Alain Prost on the list of most wins in F1.

Hamilton’s superb recovery from the back of the field was matched to some degree by Räikkönen’s march to the podium from 10th after serving his penalty.

Bottas was fourth ahead of Ricciardo with Hulkenberg sixth for Renault. Ocon took seventh ahead of  Alonso, Magnussen and Gasly.















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Bristish Grand Prix Podium & Press Conference

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Full transcript from the top three press conference after the British Grand Prix, Round 10 of the 2018 Formula 1 World Championship, at Silverstone, featuring race winner Sebastian Vettel (Ferrari), second placed Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) and Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari)

Track interviews conducted by Martin Brundle

Sebastian, you’ve matched Alain Prost’s total of 51 victories and surely that was one of your more satisfying victories? What a drive.
Sebastian Vettel: Yeah, obviously the safety car spiced it up. It was a nice time because Valtteri was pushing like crazy. I had the advantage on tyres but it was not so easy to find a way through but then I surprised him. I wasn’t sure I’d make the corner but I did, so it worked really and very, very happy. Great thanks to the team supporting me and the people in the background because yesterday I was a bit damaged but much better shape today, it was no problem, so yeah, really, really happy.

I can see you have still got a lot of tape on your neck. We were concerned you were going to struggle to finish the grand prix.
SV: I was as well going into the race but it was fine. I think with all the adrenalin going… probably I will feel it a little bit tonight. It doesn’t matter. It held up. The race was fantastic; we got a great crowd. A race I enjoyed a lot, I think the people enjoyed it a lot, really an amazing day.

Eight point lead in the championship over Lewis, who I will try to find. Where is he? I’ll go to Kimi first. Kimi, you had a few adventures to be on the podium again.
Kimi Raikkonen: Yeah, obviously in the third corner I locked the wheel and I was behind the cars, so I ended up hitting Lewis in the rear corner, I oversteered, he spun, my bad, but that’s how it goes sometimes. It was not a straightforward race.

You thought the 10-second penalty was fair enough?
KR: It was my mistake, so that’s fine. I deserve it and took the 10 seconds and kept fighting. That’s how it goes.

You had countless wheel-to-wheel fights, Red Bull, with others. You must be satisfied with how aggressive you were in the race and how it paid off for you?
KR: Yeah, for sure, without the mistakes and the 10-second penalty it would have been better, but I tried. Obviously my view is that I did the best that I could do but obviously there seems to be some awfully opposite looks on what I’m doing, unfortunately, so we’ll see.

Lewis, a brilliant comeback drive in front of your home fans.
Lewis Hamilton: This is the greatest race of the year and this is the greatest crowd and I’m sorry I wasn’t able to bring it home for you today, but thank you for your support. It’s you guys that helped me get through today. We’ll take it on the chin and keep pushing hard, because believe me I will not give up. I will not give up.

By Turn 3 you were pretty much last and you’re up here in second place but I sensed when you got out of the car you were still pretty unhappy?
LH: Well, the team did an amazing job this weekend and we’ve got so much support but so much pressure for us all. Interesting tactics, I would say, from their side but we will do what we can to fight them and improve in the next races, but I’m just so grateful for all the support we had here. This is the best grand prix we’ve had all year, look at the crowd, it’s been amazing.

Press Conference

Seb, you said the Safety Car spiced it up a bit, but don’t you think it helped you a bit because it seemed like you had more problems with the tyres in the first stint and in the second stint Valtteri came a bit later and would have probably been able to push you a bit more?
SV: No, I disagree. I think in the first stint it was crucial to open the gap, which we did. And then in the end, I think Valtteri’s tyres were a little bit in better shape but in the second stint we were largely controlling and I think it would have been fine until the end. Obviously with the safety car then it was one or the other. Obviously we are the first car, us deciding to pit, obviously they stayed out. I think if we stay out, they pit. So he had a free pit stop and I lost a position to him but after the re-start I knew we have our chance, with fresher tyres. Obviously then there was another safety car and then you’re losing laps but it was crucial to make the move early on. He was pushing very hard and did a good job and it was difficult to get past in the beginning because his tyres were still fine and he was in free air. But I was able to surprise him and then I could control the last couple of laps, turn things down and bring the car home.

Lewis, can you just talk us through the start and what happened at Turn 3 please?
LH: Yeah, I just had a poor getaway. Too aggressive on the… just got wheelspin and lost ground to the others and then just got a tap from behind and that was that.

To both Ferrari drivers, can we say that the car has passed the toughest examination, as Silverstone has been the favourable circuit for a long time?
KR: I don’t think Silverstone is any more difficult than other circuits. They’re all tricky and obviously it depends on the layouts and stuff, that they need some special things from the car – but they’re all hard and difficult to make work. I think, maybe in people’s eyes yes – but I don’t think it changes anything.

Seb, anything to add on the competitiveness of your car?
SV: Well, this weekend was a bit different, obviously, it was very warm, which is a bit unlikely for here, compared to recent years. Also there was less wind, new asphalt, so a couple of new things but I think the main thing is that we were competitive, which we weren’t in the past. It’s a tricky circuit, you need to get the balance right, of downforce and drag. I think we have a very good car, we brought some bits, they seemed to work, so, I think we were very, very happy with the result. Obviously… yeah, it’s been a difficult track for us. This year I think we were a match. Probably there were still some weaknesses in the race at different phases. As I described, I think the end of the first stint, I think Valtteri was a bit faster to overall I think we had pace in hand, managed the second stint and managed the race well. If you have a car that is fast, I think you can make things happen, and that’s what we did today.

To Lewis. Why your team didn’t call you and Valtteri to pit, that was more or less the obvious decision to do, as the winners did and other teams also. You with medium used tyres were able to follow them with new soft tyres, in the same conditions of them, very possibly would fight for the victory, no?
LH: I can’t speak for Valtteri, I guess he was obviously in the lead and they believed that perhaps he would be able to hold on. For me, the guys pitted in front of me, that was an opportunity for me to get up into third. I think it was the right decision. If I’d followed them in I would have come out behind them, we’d have equal tyres and I would have struggle to get by them and most certainly wouldn’t have been second. These guys would have pulled away. So, I think it was 100 per cent the right decision, particularly on my car. I don’t know how many laps Valtteri had had – but most likely it was the right decision for him too – but it was very, very hard with our tyres, fighting against people with brand-new tyres for sure. And in a perfect world, I would have had new tyres – but it wasn’t that kind of day for me.

Kimi, tell us about those last few laps. You were charging and passing and really moving up.
KR: Yeah, obviously, the beginning was far from ideal. I locked a wheel and hit Lewis on the rear-right corner. Then we served the penalty and it was tricky with Red Bull for whatever reason. Every time we got close to them or behind them it seems to be very difficult to follow them, seems to be just different than any other car. We had some fights with them at the beginning of the race and at the end and managed to finally get past them. I think the Mercedes was somehow more easy to follow. Must less effect on my car. We got a pretty decent run out of Three every lap, got the momentum and managed to pass. So, it was OK but obviously but far from ideal. That’s how it goes.

Lewis, on the podium, you said ‘interesting tactics, I would say, from this side’ appearing to look at the Ferrari drivers. Do you in any way think that Turn Three collision was deliberate?
LH: All I’d say is that it’s now two races that the Ferraris have taken out one of the Mercedes, and a five-second penalty and a ten-second penalty doesn’t appear to feel… ultimately it spoils the race. It’s a lot of points that ultimately Valtteri and I have lost in those two scenarios. And, of course, it is a race situation. I couldn’t see behind me but we’ve just to work hard to try to position ourselves better so that we are not exposed to the red cars – because who knows when that’s going to happen again. We’ve got to make sure that we work hard together as a team to try to lock-out the front row and make sure that we’re fully ahead of these guys.

In the green room, there seemed to be a fair degree of frustration, not to say anger, in your body language. You didn’t appear to even be looking in Kimi’s direction. Would that be a fair analysis of your emotions – because obviously so much riding on this for you?
LH: Not at all. No. It’s easy for you to sit and watch the race. I sweat my arse off in that race. I pushed absolutely 100, 1000 per cent. Every bit of energy I had. I didn’t have anything left when I came in. People expect you to get out of the car and wave and smile and all that. I gave everything I could, I was struggling to stand. It’s so physical nowadays. It’s different when you’re in the lead and can control the pace. I was coming from last. So, I didn’t have much to give at that time and needed to take a deep breath. I don’t have any problems with Kimi.

Ferrari drivers, would you like to reply? Are you using interesting tactics? Is it your mindset to go out and take one of the Mercedes drivers out or is it just unlucky?
SV: Well, things can happen but I think it’s quite silly to think that anything that happened was deliberate, at least, I would struggle to be that precise, you know, to take somebody out. In France, I lost my wing so I screwed my race. I think it’s easy to obviously attack and have a great move and also easy to have an incident. I don’t think… I mean, I only saw it briefly on the monitor, I don’t think there was any intention and I find it a bit unnecessary to even go there.
KR: Things happen sometimes. Funnily enough you start blaming us that we did it purposefully but he locked a wheel and unfortunately we touched and both paid the price for it and that’s how it goes sometimes. It’s easy to say after the couple of races that we’re suddenly doing something against them but we’ve been hit very many times ourselves so that’s how it goes unfortunately.

Lewis, if you’re having concerns maybe that there are some interesting tactics going on…
LH: I’m not.

OK, but if it’s something that maybe you’re going to talk to Ferrari about or take further…
LH: No. I don’t have any concerns.

Lewis, obviously it’s a disappointing result for you but can you take any pleasure in the fact that you came back to second place and that the crowd appeared to really appreciate you doing so?
LH: Yes. The fans have been incredible this weekend and I’m grateful for the England football team at least doing great this weekend and keeping it positive. Obviously we’re in a tough battle this year and it’s the most intense battle that I think we’ve probably all had but I’m very very grateful that the car was still in one piece after the first turn three incident. Whilst I appeared, at the beginning, to have lost something on the rear end, when I looked at the car afterwards it seems to be OK and it was driving better and better throughout the race so that was a great thing. Honestly, to get back to second it’s huge for us and I will definitely take it, of course, and I’m happy with the drive that I did and as I said, what the team were able to do but yeah, we’ve just got to work harder and er, that’s all.

Sebastian, you were having a good look at the gold trophy when you were on the podium, presumably looking at some of the great names that are on there, a trophy that Lewis almost owns. How satisfying is this win for you and how important do you see this now in the championship, given that Ferrari seem to have the measure or at least equal pace with the Mercedes around here?
SV: To be honest I had a look and the trophy obviously carries over names of previous winners but it stopped in 2005 so I was wondering where the last 13 years have been. And then when I came back to the podium room, they showed me that there’s another bit that they forgot to put on but for sure it’s a very prestigious trophy with a lot of names. I think it’s the original motor sport… racing here’s always something special, the track is phenomenal, the fans are phenomenal as well. I’m looking whether we can have something similar in Germany, that would be great. Obviously I won the race a long time ago and it’s great, it feels great to win it again. I think it’s one of the most satisfying tracks as a driver and to come out on top obviously is a great feeling.

Sebastian, can you talk us through that final battle with Valtteri and the move that finally got him for the lead?
SV: Yeah, it was quite intense. Obviously I had the advantage on the tyres but he had the clean air so in the high speed stuff I was able to follow, but it was difficult the closer I got and I saw sort of sniffed my chance already and the first laps after the restart out of turn four and then on the Wellington Straight down to turn six, yeah, and the final move, obviously I was able to surprise him so I think he thought that I won’t dare (go on) the inside and the braking zone was coming quite fast but I thought OK, I have to go for it because I was obviously also struggling… the longer I spent behind him, struggling with my tyres as they got hotter, and losing that advantage that I had a little bit, and I felt great when I was side by side and wasn’t sure if I would make the corner but I did, so it was great and once I was ahead, obviously I could use that advantage to pull out a gap and control the race from there. But it was crucial, it wasn’t easy, they seemed to be very strong on the straights, the mid part of the straights but yeah, obviously with DRS and a tow, I was a bit stronger at the end of the straights so it worked. The main thing is that it worked and it felt great.

Lewis, you came here for your eighth podium in Great Britain, it’s a record. You have already overtaken Alain Prost and Michael Schumacher with that record. How do you feel about that?
LH: Well, I say it doesn’t mean anything to me at the moment. I’m not a record person so it doesn’t really hold much to me.

Sebastian, you said that you were trying to surprise Valtteri with that move at the end but were you surprised when he didn’t react to the move and try to close the door?
SV: No, obviously you sort of imagine where you could be at the end of the straight. I had a good exit, I would have liked to have been closer but I wasn’t but I still thought it was good enough to have a shot so I gave it everything and yeah, I obviously tried the outside on the run before and he was very late on the brakes and so was I and then I couldn’t really go anywhere so I thought OK, you can’t do that again and you have to somehow surprise him and the fact that I think that I was a little bit further back and we were close to the braking zone he was covering the inside but then still gave me a little bit of room and that’s what I used to make the move happen and obviously once I was on the inside and I had clean air from the front, the car was great and I could make the corner. I wanted to win and I had to go for it. Obviously I think he struggled a little bit more towards the end with his tyres but I wanted to get by as soon as possible and that was the key.

Seb, we’ve seen on your headrest some additional parts. Can you explain what you did exactly for your neck and we also saw that you were fine tuning it on the starting grid?
SV: Yeah, it felt good on the laps to the grid so I took some off. Obviously yesterday was a different day. Qualifying wasn’t very enjoyable. I did as little runs as possible and I had the padding just to support in the corners where you don’t… like turn eight that is easily flat so I was resting my head yesterday and today it wasn’t necessary so I had a good feeling and the race was no problem.

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