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We were hoping Hamilton would struggle in last stint – Vettel

Sebastian Vettel has said that he is happy with Spanish Grand Prix P2, but not entirely following thrilling battle with title rival Lewis Hamilton. German still holds a slight six-point advantage in the World Championship race.

“I had a really good start with Lewis and myself both picking up wheel spin but I put the clutch in again and gained on him. Was really happy with that,” Vettel said.

“I managed to stay ahead and settled into a nice rhythm, everything was fine. Then Lewis stayed out longer and did the opposite, mirrored the strategy which I knew at the end would be crucial.

“Then he came out and I was a bit surprised that it was so close. I tried to brake as late as possible, locked up, don’t know if we touched but I managed to stay ahead.

“The lap after I was doing everything I can to try and stay in front and I was lucky as there were cars giving me a tow. As soon as I was alone he just flew past down the straight. It was a shame, we tried to stay in but well done to him.

“We did everything we could.”

“My second stint was also pretty good: I managed to get close to Valtteri who was all over the place with his tyres. He blocked me, in the end I managed to get past, but by then I had lost an awful lot of time. ”

“Then in the last stint we did everything we could, the car was good, it was close with Lewis. I am happy when we have the chance to race the Mercedes cars, we can be very happy but not entirely happy today. ”

“The most important thing, though, is that we were in the fight; the team is in great form, we need to improve because we want to be ahead of them. ”

Asked about ‘Plan C’, he added: “We had a huge gap to Daniel behind so could have done anything.

“We were hoping that Lewis would struggle with his tyres but he didn’t have any problems. We tried to keep pushing, stay close.”

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