Bottas and Wolff clarify ‘wingman’ comments

F1 Raceweek Mercedes relaxed despite Hungary struggles

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner blamed the Renault engine as being substandard. Earlier this month Red Bull confirmed it will switch from Renault to Honda power for next season.

Vettel skidded off during the Hungarian Grand Prix's wet qualifying, enabling Hamilton to snatch a brilliant pole.

It was Hamilton's record sixth win in Hungary, his fifth this season and the 67th of his career.

Mercedes F1 boss Toto Wolff was not so sure. "That boost will last a long time with our team". Like Hamilton, he maintained the title race is still wide open.

That he leads, rather than trails, at this stage is down to rain in the last two races. "What a lovely day and a great crowd - and a great job from the team".

A virtual safety vehicle after McLaren's Stoffel Vandoorne retired briefly raised Ferrari hopes but no further drama unfolded until Vettel managed to overtake Bottas five laps from the end.

While Mercedes have made some glaring strategy mistakes, Vettel has made more errors in the heat of battle than his rival.

"It's nice to get some water in the mouth sometimes, a drink every now and then". It was, as Vettel said, a small mistake with big consequences. "Lucky that the vehicle wasn't broken and we could carry on". The season resumes in Belgium on August 26.

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Vettel, his rival in the race to become a five-time world champion, finished second after passing Bottas five laps from the end. A pit-stop error by the Ferrari crew looked to have cost Vettel second place, when the front-left tyre was slow going on.

"The second half is always exciting and intense", said Hamilton.

Vettel's had some bad luck in the past couple of races - crashing out of his home race in Germany after comfortably being in the lead before a slow pit stop ended his chances of victory in Hungary. "Apart from that, it wasn't an issue". Today's been an emotional rollercoaster in tricky conditions and so happy with the final result.

"Ferrari have had a slightly better package but we have delivered ours". But he comfortably held position while Vettel jumped ahead of Raikkonen and nearly caught Bottas.

Bottas had already done enough to keep Vettel, who crashed out from first at last weekend's German Grand Prix, away from Hamilton, as the defending champion matched his haul of six triumphs in Canada and the United States to deal another blow to the German's championship hopes.

Mercedes chose to bring Hamilton in on Sunday for his only tire change on lap 26.

Vettel started the race on soft tyres while the Mercedes drivers ran ultrasofts, but was poised to jump the early-stopping Bottas after a strong first stint. By half race distance on lap 35 he was almost 25 seconds behind Vettel.

So when he was bumped off track on his way to a podium finish by Mercedes' Valterri Bottas at the Hungarian GP the Australian took matters into his own hands, or fingers as it were.

But Vettel argued his struggle to pass Bottas demonstrated that even if he had been able to catch Hamilton, he wouldn't have been able to find a way into the lead.

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