Lewis Hamilton says title hopes rest on Mercedes suiting Hungarian GP-spec tyres
Briton has "nothing positive to say" on latest tyres after race slump
By Pete Gill
Last Updated: 07/07/13 6:09pm
Starting from pole position, Hamilton was beaten off the line by both Vettel and his Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber before eventually finishing fifth on a day of acute frustration for the Mercedes team as they struggled to extract grip from the Kevlar-belted tyres which were reintroduced for the Nurburgring event.
"The only positive is that we got points today," Hamilton told Sky Sports F1.
"In the last race, we had a chance of closing the gap to Sebastian and today I had another chance but they were just far too quick for me so I'm guessing I am just fourth or fifth in the championship and lost more ground to them. I just hope in the next race I have a better chance.
"I have to hold myself back because I have nothing positive to say about these tyres and I don't understand why we struggled so much on them, but that's motor racing.
"It's a shame because the team is working so hard, doing such a great job and we've clearly got a good car but for some reason it doesn't work on these tyres."
Hamilton and the Mercedes team are barred from running at the upcoming Young Driver Test after staging a 'private' session with Pirelli after the Spanish GP in May and the 2008 World Champion accepts it will put his team at a disadvantage before F1 moves on to Budapest.
"It doesn't help, but that's just the way it is and at least we got some running when we did the Barcelona test.
"We just have to keep pushing forward and I'll just have to pray and hope that when they bring the new batch of tyres they will work on our car."
Hamilton's fifth place, combined with Vettel's fourth victory of the season, means the Briton heads to Hungary - the mid-point of the year - 58 points off the pace in the Championship.