Lewis Hamilton was delighted to stay on top of the championship standings after finishing in second place in the European Grand Prix. The Briton had to serve a penalty for passing the safety car, but even so managed to finish as runner-up behind Red Bull rival Sebastian Vettel. The result allowed Hamilton to stay six points ahead of teammate Jenson Button, who was provisionally third today.
"I think it is just very, very positive to be leading the World Championships," said Hamilton. "Both myself and Jenson we have been working so hard all year and the results show the effort that everyone is putting in. It's great getting the results we deserve. Hopefully we can close the gap on Red Bull and hopefully really challenge them."
Hamilton, who was given a drive-through penalty, said he was unsure about what had happened with the safety car.
"I don't really know. As I was coming around Turn 1 I saw the safety car line. I saw the safety car was alongside me and I thought I had passed it so I continued and that was it," he said.
The Briton damaged his front wing at the start of the race, when he made contact with Vettel on the first corner. Despite that, he continued to push and was closer to Vettel before the penalty.
"I was clearly past Mark so I didn't see where he was. I came through Turn 1 and I was very close to Seb, and saw the gap available and went for it. I outbraked him and we went into the corner at the same pace," Hamilton related. "I was halfway down the inside. He gave me room but we touched and broke my front wing. I came in with the safety car and team did a great job to change the wing and tires.
"After that, the pace was much stronger. I was able to push him, but it was impossible to pass at this track when the cars are within one second, even with the F-duct."