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GP Week : Issue 199
It was all boyish shadow-boxing at the post-race weigh-in and interviews, but there was genuine disappointment in Nico Rosberg’s body language that he’d been ‘mugged’ by his team-mate. On fresh Soft tyres, Rosberg had the edge and was alongside, or even almost past, on several occasions, only for Hamilton to put it on the line and demand that Nico be the one to yield. It worked, no - one collided, and one of the best F1 duels of modern times went to the line. “It's a long time since I had a race like that!” grinned Hamilton. “My weekend started off well but I didn't really have great pace for qualifying and the race. I knew that I needed a good start and to go into the first corner in the lead was crucial to my race this evening. “From there, it was such a battle. Nico drove fantastically well and, in all honesty, he had the pace on me today but I managed to hold on. I knew when the Safety Car came out that Nico would be on the Option tyres and that he would be quick. To try and stay ahead of him was so hard and when I came across the line I was just so relieved. “ W hen you're racing your team mate, the pressure is really intense and we both knew that we had to bring the cars home for the team and for the championship. All credit to the team for allowing us to race and I hope the fans loved the show that we were able to put on tonight.” Nico agreed ... on most counts: “It was a great battle out there with Lewis and this kind of race is exactly why I am in Formula One; I love to race like today. Of course, it's very disappointing to have finished second in the end but I gave it everything and it just didn't quite come off for me. Lewis did a great job defending his position and, so often when I did manage to get past, I then couldn't see him in the blind spot in my mirrors. “Our strategy was good and to change it after the first stint was a decision that I made with the team. It was a slightly slower strategy but it gave me the best chance of catching Lewis at the end on the Option tyres. The difference between the prime and the option was not as big as we expected however and that's why I didn't quite manage to get by. “ T he positive must be that this was a great day for Formula One. The race was a fantastic show and hopefully it proves that the critics of our new technology are wrong.” Lewis ecstatic; Nico thoughful 28 GPWEEK.com // 28 GPWEEK.com // F1 >>> BAHRAIN PARTNERS: