Hamilton downplays start move: "It was my corner"

Lewis Hamilton feels he did nothing wrong in his battle with teammate Nico Rosberg at the start of the Japanese Grand Prix.

Pole man Rosberg went off the track after being squeezed out by Hamilton, who dove down the inside of the second corner to take the lead.

The incident meant Rosberg had to lift off, dropping down to fourth position.

Hamilton went on to take an easy victory, his eighth of the season, to extend his lead to 48 points with five races left.

The world champion said he had no doubt it was his corner, as he was on the inside.

"I don't feel it was particular that close," said Hamilton of the move. "The inside line is the inside line, so it was my corner.

"We were very, very close and understeering and running out of grip, and I imagine Nico was running out of road but that is what happens when you are on the outside."

Rosberg, who recovered to finish second, also downplayed the incident.

"Lewis got a better start and we had a good battle to Turn 1, and at Turn 2 he had the inside and made it stick and that was the end of it," he said.

Matching Senna

Today's win meant Hamilton matched the wins tally of his hero Ayrton Senna - 41 - and the world champion admitted it was a very emotional moment.

"I used to love watching Ayrton drive and see his wins. I can't describe it at the moment," said the Briton.

He also conceded it was also vital for Mercedes to fight back following a disappointing Singapore GP.

"Definitely it was important for us to strike back," he said. "The Ferraris were incredibly quick in the last race and we didn't bring our A game.

"So we had to step back in to make sure we brought it here. The car was beautiful to drive here today."

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Event Japanese GP
Track Suzuka
Drivers Lewis Hamilton , Nico Rosberg
Teams Mercedes
Article type Breaking news