Second place is the first loser, so they say, but Fernando Alonso had no quibbles with that position. "I'm extremely happy with today's result," the Ferrari driver declared. "We had a weekend that probably was not the easiest one. But even with the difficulties we are second and fighting for victory, so this is a fantastic achievement. Second in Valencia, first at Silverstone and second here.
"Our consistency has put us in a good position to enjoy this final part of the championship," he added.
Down at Red Bull, they were on orange alert after their third defeat in a row. "We weren't quick enough today," Mark Webber said bluntly after leading for a while but finishing only third behind Lewis Hamilton's McLaren and Alonso's Ferrari.
"I did everything I could. I'm happy with the way I drove, but these guys had a bit of an extra margin, especially in [the] back part of the stints. That made us a little bit exposed on strategy.
"We know what we have got to improve on and we couldn't give much more than we did today. I'm disappointed not to get a win, we had a good fight around the stops, so it's mixed emotions. You need to perform at a good level to get these. We keep learning and making progress, but we need to improve."
Runaway world championship points leader Sebastian Vettel echoed those sentiments after finishing fourth, his first non-podium finish in a long while. "Generally I think fourth was probably our maximum today which is not satisfying, but you know we have to accept it and go from there," he said. "Next week is the next race and it looks like McLaren and Ferrari are getting quicker and quicker so we need to work harder on our car to try and improve it. Of course it's not satisfying, but we have to accept that today other people were quicker than us."
For Jenson Button it was a case of another non-finish in his 199th grand prix, as hydraulic problems halted him. "I had a terrible opening lap," he admitted. "I got too much wheelspin away from the line and had to fight my way back from 10th place. I'd just overtaken [Nico] Rosberg for sixth when my power steering started to get heavy. Soon after, we retired the car on safety grounds, so it was a very disappointing end."Reuse content