Published: Mon, September 03, 2018
Arts&Culture | By Kristi Paul

Sebastian Vettel blames Hamilton for first-lap crash at Italian GP

Sebastian Vettel blames Hamilton for first-lap crash at Italian GP

Lewis Hamilton had a collision with Sebastian Vettel in the very first lap which has split opinion whether to who is to blame, and the Brit conceded that it was definitely the turning point of the race.

Pole-sitter Raikkonen looked set to win his first race in more than five years - and Ferrari's first in their homeland since 2010 - but Hamilton executed a brilliant pass on the Finn with just eight laps remaining.

Hamilton's Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas came home third ahead of Vettel with Max Verstappen taking fifth place in the classified result, after finishing third on the road, following a time penalty.

Vettel spun in a lap-one clash with Hamilton and although he raced back through the field with a damaged auto to fourth, he slipped 30 points behind the Englishman with seven races to go. Unfortunately, our race was compromised and it was a shame, but then I tried to do my best and had a decent recovery from the back. "We got a lot of points so it could be a lot worse today".

Hamilton tied Michael Schumacher's record of five Italian GP victories and extended his overall lead to 30 points over Vettel, who had cut the British driver's advantage to 17 points following last weekend's victory in Belgium. I had no other chance than to run into him and make contact. I could just focus on Kimi for the whole race.

The pair clashed at the Italian Grand Prix, with Hamilton going on to win, while Vettel's misjudgment in hitting the Mercedes driver meant he could finish only fourth. So, when I touched Lewis, I span around and that was unfortunate, as my vehicle got quite some damages. I had an opportunity, and I stuck it down the outside and made sure I was far enough alongside.

"Obviously it doesn't help when you lose points but it's not the end of the world". I'm sure you can always look at the data and see there's a little bit more but of course I'm pushing the vehicle as hard as I can and I'm really happy with the performance, really, this weekend. I am guessing he locked up, we touched, it was a brief moment, damaged the auto a little bit but I could continue. However, he said that he's "not too worried" about the championship situation.

Hamilton's former teammate and 2016 champion Nico Rosberg said it was "100 per cent Sebastian's fault".

Once again, Vettel's temperament was called into question after a collision that some pundits felt might have been avoided; he viewed it differently, of course. "Then I got used to it and drove around it but when I got out of the vehicle I was surprised myself". "It is very hard for people watching who are not in it to feel what we feel".

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