Sebastian Vettel hoping to ‘kill Mercedes’ magic’ at British Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton

GETTY Lewis Hamilton is bidding for his sixth win at the British Grand Prix

Referencing the whack taken by his Mercedes team-mate, Valterri Bottas, at the hands of Vettel in France a fortnight ago, Hamilton, who recovered brilliantly to finish second, offered this assessment: "All l would say is that it's two races in which a Ferrari has taken out a Mercedes".

The four-time champion seized the lead at the start and fought back after losing the initiative during two safety auto periods to register his second win at Silverstone and the 51st of his career.

The first lap collision led to a war of words between Mercedes and Ferrari with both Hamilton and Mercedes boss Toto Wolff questioning Ferrari's tactics, suggesting that it was done deliberately to aid Sebastian Vettel.

It was Ferrari's first win in Britain since 2011.

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"Obviously the safety auto spiced it up, but it was a nice battle", he said.

That dropped the Mercedes man to the back of the pack and Raikkonen was handed a ten second time penalty, served at the first round of pit stops.

"It was my mistake", he said.

"At least I would struggle to be that precise in order to take someone out".

While Vettel led from Bottas at the front all eyes were on Hamilton and his comeback drive through the field.

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Hamilton was on pole on Sunday and made a poor start before his brush with Raikkonen who apologised and accepted the blame.

"So, having a bad start, he immediately lost two positions". 'It was a racing incident and nothing more. Vettel pushed Bottas aggressively with ten laps remaining, but the Finn did enough to stay just in front.

Verstappen and Raikkonen were third and fourth with Ricciardo fifth.

Hamilton began the day hoping for an unprecedented sixth Silverstone triumph, but soon found himself in dire straits.

A furious finale to match the frantic first lap looked certain when Ericsson then crashed at Turn One. There was a delay before the Swede emerged from his auto, but the fact he did so apparently unharmed speaks volumes for the improvements in safety in F1.

Vettel, who led Hamilton by one point going into the 10th of 21 races, now leads by eight.

"I said you need to question whether it was incompetence or deliberate - a stupid comment of mine in the emotion", he said. "You are the fastest by miles, so don't give up".

The race was neutralised again moments later for an accident at Copse between Carlos Sainz Jr and Romain Grosjean, when Sainz attacked on the outside but Grosjean suffered a wobble at the apex.

On re-start, at Stowe, Bottas pulled away. Hamilton, forced in to a spin, continued last on track, while Raikkonen was later deemed responsible by the stewards and given a ten-second penalty.

That advantage could have been even greater had Hamilton not fought back to second following an early collision with Vettel's teammate Kimi Raikkonen.

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