• Hungarian GP - Race

Hamilton 'shocked' by team orders

ESPN Staff
July 27, 2014 « Bottas confident of beating Alonso and Ricciardo in championship | Ricciardo feared early retirement »
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Lewis Hamilton says he was stunned Mercedes asked him to move aside for Nico Rosberg during the Hungarian Grand Prix considering the fact the pair are currently fighting for the title.

During a supreme drive Hamilton went from the pit lane to third, though his chance of victory slipped away in the end on worn medium tyres behind Fernando Alonso. Nico Rosberg had been caught out by the original safety car period and eventually fell behind Hamilton, albeit on a three-stop strategy to his team-mate's two stop.

Hamilton was asked to let Rosberg through when his team-mate got within a second of him, but told Mercedes in reply: "I'm not slowing down for Nico. If he gets close enough to overtake, he can overtake". Rosberg stayed behind for eight laps before pitting but Hamilton says he should not have been asked to move over.

"If I'd let him past he would have beaten me," Hamilton said. "Also, I would have lost points to Nico. Obviously I was in the same race as him, just because he had one more stop than me doesn't mean I wasn't in the same race. He would have had the opportunity to pull away and then I thought he would come back and overtake me.

"I was very, very shocked that the team would ask me to do that. He didn't get close enough to overtake, I was not going to lift off and lose ground to Fernando [Alonso] or Daniel [Ricciardo], so it was a bit strange.

"I'm not quite sure what the situation was there. I'll go and talk to everyone and give them the benefit of the doubt, I'm sure it was perhaps for the right reasons. Ultimately I would have lost points today so it definitely feels strange, but I think it was the right decision for myself [to ignore the order]."

Hamilton says beating Rosberg on track and limiting the gap in the drivers' championship makes up for some of the pain of not winning the race at the end.

"I was just pushing as hard to get as high as I could. It's a great result. Obviously this is damage limitations. On the one hand I'm grateful to have been able to get through the difficulties I've had this weekend. I can't believe how things have gone."

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