Hamilton wins in Spain with Vettel second

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton lifts the Spanish GP trophy in front of Sebastian Vettel, of Ferrari, at the Circuit de Catalunya on Sunday.

With the win, Hamilton cuts into Vettel's lead in the drivers standings.

Hamilton was beaten into Turn 1 by Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel but stayed close in the opening stint, forcing the championship leader into a stop.

Valtteri Bottas expressed his surprise at an unexpected Mercedes engine failure that forced him to retire from Sunday's Spanish Grand Prix, just two weeks after his maiden Formula One triumph. At this stage perhaps it is too early to say but, despite Valtteri Bottas' excellent race win during Hamilton's season nadir in Sochi, it seems unavoidable that 2017 will be a title race dominated by Hamilton and Vettel.

"In the heat of the moment it feels. when I run out of road and particularly where we went off at the exit of Turn One, I had".

"I think we have a great common passion - we love racing", Vettel said.

Hamilton knew exactly who to thank for his win, radioing the team before he was even out of the auto saying: "Fantastic job, guys".

"I lost two kilos [in weight during the race]", Hamilton revealed, having taken the chequered flag less than four seconds clear of Vettel.

Australia's Daniel Ricciardo finished a distant third for Red Bull.

Though Hamilton started from pole position, it was Vettel who gained the advantage at the start. Max Verstappen, who won the race past year, retired after a first-lap clash with Kimi Räikkönen.

The pair came together on the first corner after Bottas appeared to make contact with Raikkonen to send him off line.

Bottas still played a major part in Hamilton's win, helping to delay Vettel long enough to enable the Briton to recoup vital seconds.

Vettel's delay behind Bottas brought Hamilton's deficit to the Ferrari down by four seconds but the German limited the damage with a stunning passing move on the Finn into Turn One.

With strategy key to the race, it was vital Vettel emerged ahead of Hamilton from his final stop as he was finishing the grand prix on the slower, but more durable, medium tyre. Hamilton finished the race on a faster set of tires than Vettel, passing the German on Lap 43 of 66 and conserving his tires as he sped away to victory. "I love tennis, I love watching (Roger) Federer and (Novak) Djokovic in a final, and what I really admire is the consistency", Hamilton said afterwards.

"I'm happy with the bits we bought", he said, adding as if slightly seeking to put down his rivals, "They are not as flashy and bling, but they are working". I tried to stay straight but I came over the kerb so I lost all steering and he was just ahead of me.

Sergio Perez claimed fourth and Esteban Ocon followed him home in fifth, meaning they are now the only team to have scored points with both drivers in every race this season.

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