Vettel drove past me like I wasn't there - Hamilton

Sebastian Vettel Ferrari SF71H and Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari SF71H in the pits

Sebastian Vettel Ferrari SF71H and Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari SF71H in the pits

Ferrari was outperforming Mercedes on Spa-Francorchamps' long straights all weekend long, highligting concerns Hamilton has had for some time about the relative performance of the two cars' power units.

Sebastian Vettel has reduced Lewis Hamilton's championship lead to 17 points after sealing a commanding victory in Belgium on Sunday.

But Vettel has a knack for quick starts, and nudged his Ferrari past Hamilton's Mercedes on the first lap with a smart move down the left.

"They have got a few trick things going on in the auto", the British driver said in a trackside interview.

"I'm not saying it's anything illegal".

Hamilton initially held his lead, but Vettel overtook him sharply as they headed onto the Kemmel Straight. Trick is just a word for something special, I guess. "I thought we had time enough anyhow to come in and change, but this is what happened".

Hamilton, last year's victor in Belgium, started from pole position but finished second for Mercedes while Red Bull's Max Verstappen gave his army of Dutch fans something to cheer with third place. Following that, Ferrari has another fast track well suited to it at Singapore. But Hamilton sounded confused why Mercedes is slower than Ferrari.

"They [Ferrari] have been favourites for quite a few races but we have managed to turn it on its head", Hamilton, after recording his fifth pole in Belgium, said. We've known for the last four races so they've had some things in their vehicle to enable them to be quicker on the straights. "We'll try tomorrow again, hopefully learn from mistakes and keep going".

"In both stints he had a little more pace than me", Hamilton said.

Sebastian Vettel believes Ferrari now definitively have a strong vehicle for all circuits after claiming their first win at the Belgian GP this decade in emphatic style.

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"I hope so. I hope we have more power". That's what we're working for.

However, unlike a year ago at Spa-Francorchamps, when Hamilton shrewdly negated Vettel's slipstream advantage on the long drag to Les Combes with some cunning driving (as explained in the video below), this time Vettel wasn't to be denied.

Ferrari's challenge a year ago was hindered by flucuating form from circuit to circuit but Vettel is sure they have finally cracked the challenge of producing a versatile vehicle.

Charlie Whiting, motorsport governing body FIA's race director, was asked about Hamilton's "trick" comment.

"Then I focused on the last corner - that worked really well".

"They have got a few trick things going on in the auto, I did what I could, we did what we could, so we have to keep working".

"Lewis was pretty powerless on lap one".

"I had a great re-start, I kept it clean, " Vettel said.

Don't miss out on the latest news and information. "(Ferrari) were deserved winners today.

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