Lewis Hamilton said he could have dealt more firmly with Daniel Ricciardo after he failed to pass the Red Bull driver in the closing stages of the Austrian Grand Prix.
Hamilton finished fourth behind Ricciardo despite launching a penultimate-lap attack for the final podium place.
“I really don’t think there was much left in the car at the end of the race,” said Hamilton afterwards. “But I was probably a bit too kind in my fight with Daniel and left him too much space. I won’t do that again.”
The pair crossed the finishing line separated by 1.4 seconds. Hamilton has fallen 20 points behind championship rival Sebastian Vettel, who finished second. Team mate Valtteri Bottas has also closed on Hamilton in the championship.
“Valtteri did a great job all weekend and thoroughly deserves the win,” said Hamilton. “He’s just 15 points behind me now and he’s very much in this title fight.”
Technical director James Allison praised Hamilton who has experienced technical problems with his car in the last two races weekends.
“We are sorry about the gearbox penalty he suffered,” said Allison, “but he tackled the situation as he always does: he got his head down and made the most of it.”
“This was a good race for our constructors’ championship position, extending our slender advantage over Ferrari, but we need to make sure we give Lewis the equipment he needs at the next races to make sure he doesn’t start Sunday afternoon on the back foot.”
2017 Austrian Grand Prix
- Second Driver of the Weekend win for Bottas
- Modest score for underwhelming Austrian GP
- Bottas admits he “gambled” on start in Austria
- Top ten pictures from the 2017 Austrian Grand Prix
- 2017 Austrian Grand Prix Star Performers