Sebastian Vettel feels that he and teammate Lance Stroll could have worked together better after their close call during the Sprint race at the Brazilian Grand Prix.
On Lap 9 of the event, Vettel looked to overtake Stroll on the approach to Turn 4 but the Canadian edged him off the road. The stewards handed Stroll a 10-second time penalty for a 'dangerous manoeuvre', as well as adding three points to his superlicence.
Reflecting on what happened later on, Vettel – who finished the Sprint one place off the points in P9, while Stroll was classified in P16 following his penalty – acknowledged that the incident had cost him.
"It's obviously split seconds, but I went to the inside and the gap closed," the four-time World Champion told Sky Sports F1.
"It was really tight and I went off the track, which was difficult to recover. I was sort of stuck sitting on the plank, but fortunately I got back and, after, we were able to work together and I was able to use the pace that I had."
Vettel feels he and Stroll could have done better for team
While Vettel believes that he and Stroll were able to help each other later on in the Sprint, he admits that they could have improved on this earlier on in order to get a stronger result for Aston Martin.
"It's a fine line; you're fighting for your spot, and obviously it's important to defend," the German explained.
"On the other hand, it's always [a case of] trying to outweigh, are you losing more than you gain?
"Plus we are obviously trying to work together, so I think in the end we could have done better, both of us, to try and get a better positioning for the team, not losing that much time and then obviously finishing a little bit higher."
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Stroll: I have to look at what happened
When Stroll was asked for his point of view on the incident, the 24-year-old suggested that he needed to more closely review the footage.
"I haven't seen the video, so probably I didn't leave enough space," he said.
"I have to look at what happened."
Aston Martin remain in the hunt for P6 in the Constructors' Championship, with the team currently sitting in seventh just four points behind Alfa Romeo.
Video: How do F1 sprint races work?
It will be the third and final Formula 1 sprint race of the season in Brazil. We've put together a handy refresher to explain how the weekend differs slightly from the usual format.