Abu Dhabi GP: Top 10 quotes after race

Valtteri Bottas claimed his third career victory today and his first race win at the Yas Marina Circuit

Abu Dhabi GP: Top 10 quotes after race
Podium: race winner Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes AMG F1
Podium: race winner Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes AMG F1, second place Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1, third place Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari
Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes-Benz F1 W08 crosses the line to take the chequered flag and win the race
Podium: race winner Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes AMG F1, second place Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1
Podium: third place Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari
Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari
Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari SF70H
Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari talks with Mohammed Bin Sulayem
Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing at the Red Bull Racing team photo
Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB13, Nico Hulkenberg, Renault Sport F1 Team RS17, Esteban Ocon, Sahara Force India F1 VJM10
Nico Hulkenberg, Renault Sport F1 Team, the Renault Sport F1 Team team
Sergio Perez, Sahara Force India VJM10
Sergio Perez, Sahara Force India F1 VJM10, Esteban Ocon, Sahara Force India F1 VJM10, Felipe Massa, Williams FW40, Fernando Alonso, McLaren MCL32
Esteban Ocon, Sahara Force India VJM10
Fernando Alonso, McLaren MCL32, Nico Hulkenberg, Renault Sport F1 Team RS17, Lance Stroll, Williams FW40
Fernando Alonso, McLaren MCL32
Felipe Massa, Williams FW40

ClaDriverChassisEngineGap
1 finland Valtteri Bottas  Mercedes Mercedes  
"There was a lot of pressure from Lewis from behind throughout the entire race. I knew that one proper mistake could have ruined it. I had to keep my head down and go lap by lap. I couldn't be happier to end the season like this. Of course, it would have been nice to get the second place in the championship, but Sebastian had a good weekend as well. Looking at the overall season, I need to perform better; but I'm very pleased with how the end of the season has been going for me. I'm really happy to be part of the team that won the constructors' championship. Mercedes has given me the opportunity to win a few races and claim a few pole positions, so I'm a really proud team member. However, I was hoping for an overall better result in the drivers' point. I've learned a lot this season, so now I'm really looking forward to next year. This weekend shows that I can perform, I can be on pole and win races. So now I need to try and do it more often next year."
2 united_kingdom Lewis Hamilton  Mercedes Mercedes 3.899
"A great race, a great battle at the end of the season. I did the best I could, but Valtteri did a great job - very clean and no mistakes. This is one of the harder tracks to overtake; you need to be 1.4 seconds faster than the car in front to overtake. I had a lot of pace in the second stint, but as soon as I got into that window of about 1.2 seconds, I was done. But it was neat that you could push all the way on the tyre, it didn't seem to drop off that much. It's really great for Valtteri to have this win, this is a real boost for him to go into the winter with. Now I'm looking forward to some time to sit down with my family and just reminisce about the whole year. It's been such a strong year, the team have been phenomenal all year long. I'm so grateful for everyone's hard work back at the factory and for all the support from Mercedes."
3 germany Sebastian Vettel  Ferrari Ferrari 19.330
“I was pretty lonely for most of the race, trying to save a bit of fuel in the first part of the final stint. It was not very exciting, but that's how it goes sometimes! The results have been worse than they could have been, but in the end we weren't strong enough. However, it's against the spirit of Ferrari to give up. I am sure we have a lot of things to improve and the people are very motivated. So, I am looking forward to next season. We had our chances and we took them, but we also made little mistakes here and there and I am sure they won't happen anymore. I think we didn't lose the Championship in any particular race; you just race and collect all the points, and in our case we didn't have enough. I promise to push next year and do my best together with the whole team, and then we'll see. This year we improved massively on the car; the chassis has been really strong since the first day. We made some major steps on the engine, but we still need to find some more power compared to our competitors. However, the most important thing is to focus on where we want to be as a team.”
4 finland Kimi Raikkonen  Ferrari Ferrari 45.386
"Today my car felt pretty good most of the time, but to be honest, my race was boring. I was fuel saving for most of the time. In my view this has nothing to do with racing, but rules are rules. There's nothing you can do, you keep lifting halfway through the straights, 200 meters before the braking point and the guy behind has to do the same. It's painful not able to push your car when you have the potential to do it. It looks close, but it's not a fight. I held Verstappen behind me and at the same time I was saving enough fuel to be legal. In some race tracks you have to do it more than in others and it's not very exciting. Overall this year we would have liked to do a lot better, as we had a pretty strong package; we just need to fix and minimize all the issues. Next year, it will be a different story with a different car, and we'll start from zero. We want to improve in all areas and go faster."
5 netherlands Max Verstappen  Red Bull TAG 46.269
“For me that was a pretty boring race, if I had a pillow in the car I could have fallen asleep. I tried to follow Kimi at the start but it’s so hard at this track and I couldn’t find an opportunity to pass. As soon as you get within 1.5 seconds it is really tough to get close and make a pass. I was surprised at how good my pace was during the race, especially as I have struggled all weekend with the feeling of the car. Once I got caught in the blue flags and I dropped off a bit I was able to see the true pace of the car, and it was actually quite quick. It’s a shame we couldn’t show it and be able to fight, which also comes as bit of a surprise at this track. In all, it’s been a positive end to the year. In the last two races we didn’t maximise our performance but they are not strong tracks for us so we expected that. We will keep working hard to improve as we have done over the latter stages of this season and with some improvement from the engine side we should at least be close to the top guys next year.”
6 germany Nico Hulkenberg  Renault Renault 1'25.713
“It was a bit of a thriller! It was a very interesting first lap, then very interesting again after the stop when I had to get past the Haas, which was super-fast on the straights and obviously I had Checo right behind me waiting to take advantage. We managed to come out on top and it’s a very decent end to the season. Sixth position in the championship is good for us and will be a morale booster for the team over the winter. We had a good package over the second half of the season, but we have had some issues so it is great to finish on a positive result and go into the winter with our chins up.”
7 mexico Sergio Perez  Force India Mercedes 1'32.062
“It wasn’t the most exciting race for me, but I had a very busy first lap battling with Nico [Hulkenberg]. I think his penalty was very strange because I was ahead of him and he just cut the corner, gaining a big advantage and a position. He had more pace and in clean air he could just go and make up enough time to make the penalty useless. He should have just given up the position, as is required and as he did later in the race with Grosjean, and he would have had to overtake me on track. I am happy with the result today and it was important to finish this year strongly. It’s my first year at Force India without a podium, but I think we made a big step forward. I scored one point less than last year with just 20 races on the calendar instead of 21. The overall result is great: seventh in the drivers’ championship and fourth in the teams’ standings. I don’t think we could do anything better than that this year and I hope we can continue this way into 2018.” 
8 france Esteban Ocon  Force India Mercedes 1'38.911
 “It was a really quiet race with not a huge amount of things happening. The start was the busy moment when I almost got ahead of Hulkenberg, but he was on the racing line and he was able to brake later. From there I was running a different strategy compared to Checo and although I was getting closer to him at the end, I just didn’t have enough laps to catch him. It’s nice to end the year with another strong result and I’m really proud of what we have achieved as a team this year. The winter months ahead will involve a lot of training so that I can come back even stronger in 2018.”
9 spain Fernando Alonso  McLaren Honda 1 lap
“This was an important race for us. It was the last one of this project and we wanted to finish it in a good way. It wasn’t that exciting from our position, but we had an interesting battle with [Felipe] Massa in front and Carlos [Sainz] behind. We chose to undercut Felipe and it worked quite well, but after that we were struggling with the pace and running alone for most of the time. But, we had a solid race, a good start, a good strategy and scored two points, so I’m happy. It has been a tough season and a tough three years for us, but I’m still feeling very proud of this project. We didn’t succeed in terms of results and we delivered below expectations, but nevertheless everyone fought and worked very hard. Now that we are both going our separate ways, we wish the best for Honda and good luck to the McLaren Renault project also. Now it’s a new chapter for both of us.”
10 brazil Felipe Massa  Williams Mercedes 1 lap
"It’s a great feeling. I can say I am really proud of everything I’ve achieved, all 16 years and all the amazing races, and the great people I met in the paddock, racing against the best drivers in the world. To be honest, I’m very lucky to have had all of this in my life so thanks to my family and to god for all of these amazing opportunities. The race was good, I was fighting from the beginning to the end. Unfortunately, we lost the position after the pitstop but I’m really happy overall."

 

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