Published: Tue, May 15, 2018
Sport | By Gary Shelton

Wolff: Ricciardo is a 'definite' option for Mercedes

Wolff: Ricciardo is a 'definite' option for Mercedes

Sunday's race at the Circuit de Catalunya was something of a reset, with Hamilton taking his second successive win - after Azerbaijan - to stretch his championship lead to 17 points.

His existing contract expires at the end of this season but he is expected to extend his deal for at least one more year with the reigning four-time world champions.

"Obviously we don't want to lose him and I don't think he wants to go anywhere else", Wolff said.

"In the next few days there will be meetings and we don't know if the same tyres will be used in France and Britain". Plus, if we don't have the occasional boring race, we won't appreciate the good ones!

"But it's nearly all sorted and we'll pick it up at the right time". "So we need to stay calm and humble, because it can be a different ball game again next time". Silverstone hosted the first grand prix back in 1950, and F1 felt it would be fitting for the Northamptonshire airfield to host next year's landmark race, too, meaning the event would move from its July slot to April. "Race by race we're understanding the tyres more, which is a bit battle for everyone". 'The bottom line is that we were not quick enough, ' a rather glum Vettel conceded. Mercedes are happy with what they are seeing, and the consensus within the team is that he will be offered a 12-month contract extension if he carries on in this fashion.

It was the first one-two of the season for Mercedes, which had struggled to keep pace with the Ferraris. "It's the greatest feeling to come here and have that kind of performance and have a convincing win".

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Hamilton pulled away early and was able to comfortably control the pace of the race through to the end, finishing more than 20 seconds ahead of his teammate.

"Apparently, the changes that were made did us more harm than it did our opponents", Ferrari's Vettel said.

With the exception of the seasonopening Melbourne race, the 33-year-old had so far this season appeared ill at ease in his Mercedes, fighting to impose his will on a capricious vehicle. Hamilton set blindingly fast sector times throughout the race regardless of tyre-type, and it is going to be dashed hard for Vettel to claw back this advantage.

Lewis Hamilton started on pole, had a good start and refused to look back for the rest of the race. The Red Bull cars of Verstappen and Ricciardo kept out of trouble just behind them. The drivers scrambled all over the turn hoping not to hit Grosjean but Nico Hulkenburg and Pierre Gasley were collected in the mess.

Renault, meanwhile, will use current F1 star Carlos Sainz on the opening day, and 24 hours later British-Korean Jack Aitken, racing in F2 with ART Grand Prix this year, will get his first taste of contemporary F1 machinery.

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