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Japanese GP: Top 10 quotes after race

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Japanese GP: Top 10 quotes after race
Oct 8, 2017, 6:35 AM

Lewis took his 61st career victory today - his third at the Suzuka International Racing Circuit, eighth of the 2017 season and 40th win with the Silver Arrows

 Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W08
 Race winner Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1, wears the Indy 500 winners ring of interviewee Takuma Sato
 Race winner Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1, takes a photo with Max Verstappen, Red Bull, second place, on the podium
 Max Verstappen, Red Bull, second place, Race winner Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1, on the podium
 Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB13
 Third place Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull Racing, on the podium
 Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull Racing RB13
 Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes AMG F1 W08
 Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes AMG F1 W08, Esteban Ocon, Sahara Force India F1 VJM10
 Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari SF70H
 Esteban Ocon, Sahara Force India F1 VJM10, Sergio Perez, Sahara Force India F1 VJM10
 Esteban Ocon, Sahara Force India F1 VJM10
 Sergio Perez, Sahara Force India F1 VJM10
 Sergio Perez, Sahara Force India F1 VJM10
 Kevin Magnussen, Haas F1 Team VF-17, Romain Grosjean, Haas F1 Team VF-17
 Kevin Magnussen, Haas F1 Team VF-17, Romain Grosjean, Haas F1 Team VF-17
 Kevin Magnussen, Haas F1 Team VF-17, Romain Grosjean, Haas F1 Team VF-17
 Romain Grosjean, Haas F1 Team VF-17

Cla#DriverChassisEngineLapsTime/Gap
1 44 united_kingdom Lewis Hamilton Mercedes Mercedes 53 1:27'31.193
"The start was okay, although the initial getaway was not spectacularly good, I had a bit of wheel spin. But from then on I had a good start and it was pretty much under control from there. I was trying to manage the pace and the tyres; it was a long way to go, it was the hottest the track had been all weekend, so that was really crucial. With the VSC towards the end, I lost a lot of temperatures in the tyres and waking them up was not so easy. I got stuck behind traffic, I was losing so much time and Max' car was so big in my mirror. It was very close for a couple laps, but I was able to keep it together. It was not an easy walk in the park today, it was a win that I had to work very hard for. Great race by Max, I enjoyed racing him. It's almost unbelievable to think we are where we are in the championship. I was excited to race Sebastian today, but he was obviously very unfortunate. It's still a long way to go, there are still a hundred points. I'm just going to keep my head down and hopefully will continue to be in a form like this."
2 33 netherlands Max Verstappen Red Bull TAG 53 1.211
“This is my second year in a row on the podium here at Suzuka; it seems like Japan is a good place for me! Our car was very competitive in the corners but it meant we lost a bit on the straights and weren’t ever really able to have a proper go at it. The degradation on the soft was really good and the balance felt good throughout the race, which is really positive in terms of finishing the season strongly. Lewis had some difficulties when he had traffic in front but at the end of the day he was controlling it. The traffic gave me a bit of a chance to close up and potentially have a chance to take him. It was a bit of a shame the back-markers came into play but I don’t think it made a big difference, once Lewis had clean air I would have struggled to pass him. It just seems that the Mercedes struggle when following other cars closely. In the race it seems we are always more competitive than Qualifying, so I’m looking ahead to Austin and hoping we can carry this form on and get another podium. Two podiums in two weeks means I leave Asia extremely satisfied and excited to get back in the car in the US and try and extend this streak.”
3 3 australia Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull TAG 53 9.679
“Overall the race today was a thumbs up for me. At the start of the weekend I said I wanted to get a podium in Suzuka and I got it. I can’t go back on what I said and wish for more, but I need to look back at the start and the actual getaway as that was what cost me the place to Max and Ocon. The first 100 metres could have been better but otherwise the race was pretty lonely in third place. As fun as this track is on one lap it’s tricky to do much in the race and very hard to follow another car. In the end it was actually nice to have some pressure from Valtteri to keep me pushing all the way to the finish. I felt confident I could keep third place in the closing laps if I drove cleanly and hit all the apexes, which is what I did. I’m happy to spray some more champagne, it’s my ninth podium of the season which is a new record for me and to be in the position that we are now makes me pretty happy. It’s really encouraging for the team to have another double podium, both cars are getting to the finish reliably now and we are also quick. We should be able to put up a good fight in Austin and Mexico and if we can keep this rolling into 2018 then absolutely we should be looking pretty good. All I have to say now is arigatooooooooo Japan.”
4 77 finland Valtteri Bottas Mercedes Mercedes 53 10.580
"It was a close fight; especially in the end I was getting closer to Daniel, but there just was not enough time anymore and the VSC didn't help either. The pace seemed to be okay, but coming to this race we always knew that overtaking is tricky. The strategy was good for me today. It created a good opportunity in the end, otherwise it would have been really difficult to even get close. The race was close to our game plan, but it would have been nice to be on the podium. We went through all of the scenarios before the race, so when Lewis caught up to me after his pit stop, of course I tried to help him win. I've definitely learned a lot again from this weekend. I now want to focus on the last few races, make the most out of them and see where we end up this year. I'm looking forward to Austin. I enjoy the track very much; it's where I got my first points in Formula One and I always love going back there."
5 7 finland Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari Ferrari 53 32.622
“Our starting position today was not ideal. I did a decent start on the soft tires and in the first lap I tried to gain some positions, but when I attempted to pass a Renault I ran wide and lost some places; so I had to make them back. The feeling in the car was a little bit tricky all the way through the race, not the nicest balance; some laps were ok, some others a bit more difficult. It's quite tricky to follow other cars on this track; we did a fairly good job out of overtaking people but we were too far from those at the front. Obviously, the final result is far from being the best possible. As for Sebastian, I don't know what happened; we have made a lot of improvements over the last few years as a team, but now, for whatever reason, we suddenly seem to have technical issues coming out from nothing. It's kind of weird, our cars are running perfectly and suddenly on Sunday there is an problem that nobody expects. There is some work to be done on that side. Then we are going to push until the last lap of the last race and we'll see where we end up.”
6 31 france Esteban Ocon Force India Mercedes 53 1'07.788
“It was a great race, especially the start and the opening laps, and I was running third for a long time. We are still missing a little bit of pace to keep the big guys behind, but it was great fun fighting at the front. I tried my best to keep Ricciardo and Bottas behind, but they were just too quick and I had to let them go and focus on my race. The main challenge today was managing my pace because it was a one-stop race and it was important to look after the tyres so they would be strong at the end. I was running ahead of Checo, we had nothing to gain from the cars ahead and a comfortable margin to the cars behind. So the priority was to bring the car home and score the big points. It’s been an awesome weekend and it feels as though we achieved the maximum, which is why this result is so enjoyable. We also learned a lot about the car, which will make us stronger in Austin, so that we can hopefully close the gap on the teams ahead of us.”
7 11 mexico Sergio Perez Force India Mercedes 53 1'11.424
“I am very happy for the team with this great result, which was definitely the maximum we could achieve today. It was a relatively easy race: we had a strong qualifying session and we had good race pace, so we spent a lot of time on our own. I felt I was quicker than Esteban in the second stint and I had an opportunity to overtake him at the final restart, but we followed the team’s instructions. We knew this would be the case so it wasn’t a surprise, and swapping us wouldn’t have made a difference in terms of points for the team, so I understand the team’s perspective. In the end, Esteban did a great job during the whole weekend. The last two races have been really strong for us and I am very pleased with the results we have achieved. The ‘Fuerza Mexico’ message on the podium before the race meant a lot to me and I’d like to say ‘thank you’ to everyone in the paddock. The support my country has received in the last few weeks has been incredible and I hope we can keep helping, especially as we get ready for the race in Mexico later this month.”
8 20 denmark Kevin Magnussen Haas Ferrari 53 1'28.953
“I enjoyed my race. We maximized our potential as a team getting P8 and P9 and scoring points. I don’t think we could’ve hoped for better, so I’m happy for us. I feel I’ve had some good races lately, but just haven’t had that bit of luck that I needed to get the points. Today, it worked out. Hopefully, I can keep this going and score more points over the last bit of the season. Results like today are definitely not easy to get. You need to get everything right, and I think we did today, so well done to the team.”
9 8 france Romain Grosjean Haas Ferrari 53 1'29.883
“It’s our second double-score for the team, so that’s pretty awesome. I’m very happy for the team. I knew yesterday I had some great pace in the car. I couldn’t show it as I was always behind Kevin all race long, but I had much more pace in the car. I wish I could’ve been ahead. I think I could’ve fought with the Force Indias, so that’s pretty good. We figured out how to get the tires to work a little bit better. It’s clearly the key. When they work, it’s so much faster. When they don’t, you just struggle. We still need to improve that, but I felt much better in the car. I was happy with the brakes, everything went well. It’s going to be great heading to Austin now for our second race there. It’s such a cool track. I’m looking forward to seeing all the fans welcoming us and, hopefully, getting some more points there, as well.”
10 19 brazil Felipe Massa Williams Mercedes 52 1 lap
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