Ferrari clearly favouring Vettel, says Hamilton

Hamilton is battling for his fourth Formula One world championship against the Ferrari of Sebastian Vettel, who extended his lead at the top after winning the Monaco Grand Prix yesterday.

The Prancing Horse team is 17 points clear of Mercedes in the constructors' championship and Vettel leads Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton by 25. "They are pushing everything to make sure Sebastian will maximise all of his weekends".

"It's hard for the leader here to be passed - unless the team decides to favour one auto", Lewis Hamilton, now 25 points behind Vettel after six races, said. Ferrari insist they brought in Raikkonen to protect against the pit stop of Valtteri Bottas, a Mercedes not in the same league as Ferrari this weekend.

Hamilton, who hosted a star-studded party here at the principality on Sunday evening, was remarkably upbeat after his disappointing performance at the most famous race on the Formula One calendar. "I really have no idea".

Ricciardo's happiness a completely different mood than that of Raikkonen, who was stony-faced throughout his post-race interview and remained so throughout a 30-minute long press conference.

"The auto was in a really different place then we ever really had it before and it was definitely unexpected for the engineers, they corrected it and it was worse".

Raikkonen's stop opened the door for Vettel and to his considerable credit he took the opportunity with both hands, setting two fastest laps of the race, on ageing tyres, which allowed him to create the gap needed to stay ahead of his teammate. "It's second place and it doesn't feel good". Valtteri has been doing a great job and I don't now feel we have to favour one or the other.

"We are racing, we get along well, I can understand that Kimi's upset", said the German.

"I like the notion of the underdog because people obviously want to see the underdog win", said Wolff.

Toto Wolff agreed with the German's assessment.

Hamilton's season has been blighted by an on-going struggle to get this year's new Pirelli tyres in the optimum operating window, and thus extracting the maximum performance from his Mercedes auto.

Teammate Kimi Raikkonen, on pole for the first time in nine years, lost out in the pitstops but secured a Ferrari one-two with Hamilton finishing seventh for Mercedes after starting 13th.

"Our vehicle is not working everywhere we go, but the more races we do, the more we learn and the stronger we get". In terms of looking for, I don't know if we will need more hard weekends or not. "This is the reality of it at the moment".

On a circuit noted for the extreme difficulty it presents for overtaking, Hamilton was lucky simply to scrape into a points-paying result.

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