Happy Hamilton surprised by Monaco recovery

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A joyful Lewis Hamilton admitted seventh place was better than he was expecting having started from P13 on the grid at the Monaco Grand Prix.

The Mercedes driver made a place on Stoffel Vandoorne, the man who's crash ended the Briton's qualifying early, at the start, before staying out later than the cars ahead and using the clear air to move up the order as he looked to limit the damage.

Though the result actually matched his worst without retiring since the start of the V6 hybrid era, Hamilton was pleased with how the race panned out.

“I feel really good, I feel very positive. I feel really happy,” he claimed.

“I came here today a lot further back and I had no idea what was going to happen. The beginning of the race was quite boring and then when I got in that clear air, I had a lot of fun.

“The team said in the strategy meeting this morning that 10th was the best I could get, which really would have sucked. But really happy that I was able to leapfrog those guys as you can't overtake on track.

“Six points. The gap's big, for sure, but not impossible to close. I come away I would say from one of the most difficult weekends that I've had for a while. Still lots of positives to take from it. Just let my guys know that we never give up and we keep going.”

Moving forward, Hamilton will be very keen to see tyre and set-up issues, that appeared at their worst in Monaco, solved and can expect a chance to start recouping some of the lost ground in the championship at one of his strongest circuits in two weeks time.

“Well I mean, it was hard to close up to where I was coming into this weekend,” he said, referring to how the gap to Vettel was likely to significantly increase after the bad qualifying. “25 points is a long way, but I've got some incredible support here, back home, all over.

“The team I know are going to work as hard as they can to make sure we're ahead of the Ferraris, and I'm going to work as hard as I can to make sure that a weekend like this is not repeated.

“Montreal, we're going to have to seriously bring it there,” he concluded.