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Lewis Hamilton: 'No sense' in getting Valtteri Bottas to back-up Sebastian Vettel

Lewis Hamilton says it makes no sense for Mercedes to ask Austrian Grand Prix polesitter Valtteri Bottas to back-up Sebastian Vettel during the race in an attempt to help him.

The Mercedes driver could only set the third-best time behind teammate Valtteri Bottas and Formula One title rival Sebastian Vettel in qualifying, but will drop to eighth after his five-place grid penalty is applied. Hamilton dismissed suggestions Bottas could back-up Vettel to help him progress up the order and admits he was simply off the pace when it mattered in the final segment of qualifying after being unable to hook-up a clean lap.

Lewis Hamilton. GEORG HOCHMUTH/AFP/Getty Imagea
"It makes no sense for Valtteri to slow down so that will not be the case," Hamilton explained. "It makes sense for him to push as hard as he can to win the race. I'll do the best job I can. I obviously want to try and get up there and get a one-two with Valtteri so I'll do the best job I can to get further up.

"It was a pretty straightforward session, no real issues. The car was good and Valtteri did a fantastic job today so I'm really happy for him but I just didn't hook it up. Q1 and Q2 was good and then Q3 was just so-so."

Hamilton opted to run on the super-soft tyre in Q2, meaning he will start on that compound and can run longer than his direct rivals in the opening stint of the race -- though the Briton downplayed the impact of having an advantage on tyre life.

"I don't think it's going to make a big difference if I'm really honest," Hamilton said. "It's generally a slower tyre so I think in the first stint it's just about length. But lots of things can happen, rain, Safety Cars, who knows. We will see."

When asked if his mindset had changed following the news of his gearbox penalty, Hamilton replied: "You still approach it exactly the same. Nothing changes at all if I'm honest. You just try to get as high as possible and then when it comes to the race it's about damage limitation so I'll try to minimise the damage.

"I found out on Tuesday I think it was. You go in with a really positive mind about coming back and fighting. It's difficult for us all to swallow but we pull together as a team and we work as hard as we can. We've still got great performance and hopefully I can do a good job for the team tomorrow and get some good points."

Source: http://www.espn.co.uk/f1/story/_/id/19916792/lewis-hamilton-no-sense-getting-valtteri-bottas-back-sebastian-vettel

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