Lewis: “Thank you guys! The car was spectacular in the race!”

Lewis: “Thank you guys! The car was spectacular in the race!”

Lewis, did you dream or think this would be the result today?

Of course, I was dreaming it last night but you never really think it’s going to happen. I just want to say a huge thanks to my team. What they’ve done this year is absolutely incredible and to be able to arrive here knowing that we have a car we can fight with, and just the feeling I had through the race, it’s… I couldn't do it without them. Thank you guys.

You had a big smile up on the podium!

Yeah, I was so excited… I was looking for that clean weekend and this has been it. It’s been fantastic. It’s not perfect for the team because Nico didn’t finish and we’re always striving to get both cars finishing 1-2. I don’t think anyone has finished one-two before and that was our goal. So there are things we can still work on. I also want to say a big thanks to all the fans. Incredible support today, so thank you guys.

Your second victory in Singapore, your seventh of the season and a very popular win, it would seem, with the crowd – but there was clearly a tense moment for you after the safety car when you knew you had to stop again and it was clear the four or five cars behind you didn’t – but the strategy team stayed calm, you stayed calm and you’re now leading the Drivers’ Championship. Just tell us about the rollercoaster of emotions and the way you feel leaving Singapore tonight.

Coming here and to the last six races with a great race in Monza, knowing that we had a car to compete here, obviously yesterday in qualifying it was very close between everyone so I didn’t really know what to expect today – but got off cleanly. Of course it would have been a hardcore race if Nico was in the race with me as the car was feeling very good and we would have been very strong. But, yeah, later on in the race, I think for me I was a bit unaware of what I needed to do. That second-to-last stint, I extended it as long as I could and then they said “we need 27 seconds.” And that was still six seconds I needed more, and my tyres were dropping off, so I didn’t really understand why. And I was also nervous that, if the Safety Car came out, would that cause me big problems? So anyway, fortunately we got to where I needed to go and we pitted. I came out, and I saw Sebastian going past but straight away I knew they were obviously doing a two-stop, I would have good pace. So, took it easy the first lap. It was actually a bit of a tight gap, maybe I should have overtaken him somewhere else but fortunately Sebastian was very fair and I got by. After that it was quite straightforward. Amazing job from the team and the guys back at the factory. The car was really spectacular in the race.

Is there anyone you dedicate your victory to?

I’ve not really thought of it. There are only a few of the race wins which I’ve really dedicated to anyone. Maybe to my fans, I think. I met a couple of really special people last week – they’ll know who they are – and just generally to all the fans. They’re sending me messages and all that, really just saying that we win or we lose together and also being here with all the British flags, it lifts you up so much that probably they don’t even realise, so this is for them.

You said on the podium that Mercedes were hoping for a one-two finish but in terms of the championship, can you say, in all honesty, that you’re sorry that Nico didn’t finish?

Well, of course the points are something... I came here hoping to really gain those seven points and anything more than that was just a bonus, so today, of course, those extra points are a huge help. That’s several DNFs we’ve had now on either car and we want to continue getting those one-twos still. I know that the team will not be 100 percent happy today because we want to win collectively, we want to get those one-twos, we want to be the dominant team all together, so by not getting that result, they’ll be going back to the drawing board trying to figure out what happened. They’re constantly coming up to things and perhaps other people are starting to be a bit more reliable than us so that’s an area that we can still definitely improve on.

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