Sebastian Vettel praised Lewis Hamilton for his performance at the Bahrain Grand Prix, stating that the Mercedes driver outsmarted Max Verstappen despite the Red Bull's advantage when it came to pace.
The Dutchman topped the timesheets all weekend but in the end it was Hamilton who came out on top. The Brit held off his rival over the course of the final laps, and even when Verstappen did find a way past with three laps to go, he was forced to give the place back after leaving the track to complete the overtake.
“I saw the highlights after the race,” Vettel told RacingNews365.com and other members of the media. “I think Max was faster, he had better tyres at the end of the race, but Lewis was smarter and drove well and kept his head down and did what he had to do.
“I think he had, in that regard, nothing to lose and everything to win and he came out and won so it speaks for him. Max had a chance, as I said he was fast and should have won the race, and didn't win the race, and Lewis won."
As for his own performance, Vettel knows Bahrain was a race to forget as he finished 15th. However the German is pleased with how Aston Martin have prepared for this weekend's Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.
"It wasn't a great weekend for us, bot in terms of all the things that happened and the result," Vettel stated. "The response has been quite positive. The spirit is great in the team and I'm willing to put everything in that I can to try and understand and to try and help."