Sebastian Vettel: I had nowhere to go in Bottas collision

Ruben Holloway
June 25, 2018

Max Verstappen jokingly suggested Sebastian Vettel should change his style after the Ferrari driver lost the Formula One championship lead with a first lap collision on Sunday.

"We have all pulled together and done a great job in putting the auto where we need it, for both Valtteri and I", Hamilton said after qualifying. "It is a lovely Sunday".

The four times champion's best time in the second was 1:32.539, with Mercedes finally giving him the updated engine after delaying its introduction in Canada two weekends ago due to a technical issue. Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo was fourth.

Sunday's race will be the first French Grand Prix in a decade and the first at Le Castellet's Paul Ricard circuit since 1990.

With his victory, Hamilton set a new record for most wins at different circuits.

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But Hamilton's mood later took a turn as he watched a replay of Vettel's crash with Bottas on the 210mph charge to the opening bend.

Stewards announced an immediate investigation into the collision between Bottas and Vettel, with video replays showing the German had locked up and hit the rear of the Finn's vehicle as they jostled for position.

"We were going side by side to the braking zone". "That's what they said to me at the beginning of the season so should do the same and then of course, Seb shouldn't do anything again and just drive again and learn from this and just go on". "Everything seemed to go against me today".

Many F1 fans travelled long distances by auto to attend the race weekend, but were unable to reach the circuit and use their tickets.

Both Hamilton and Mercedes' non-executive boss Lauda were critical of the penalty handed to Vettel. Grosjean has now not scored for 12 races in a row and also collected a five second penalty.

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"I tried to push everything in the last attempt, but looking back, I pushed too hard", Vettel said.

"It was my mistake".

"I'm disappointed because we had a chance to get a one-two finish".

Vettel pitted to have the car's nose replaced while Bottas' tyre was almost entirely gone by the time he got back to his Mercedes team.

Vettel, at the back after a pit stop to fix the front wing damaged in the crash with Bottas made light work of the backmarkers, starting with a light tap as he passed Fernando Alonso's McLaren at Turn Three at the re-start, which nudged the Spaniard into a spin.

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Their fight back into the points, and in Vettel's case with some hope of ending up on the podium, provided much of the entertainment for the rest of the afternoon with the German up to eighth after 15 laps.

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