I'll maybe have 10 pints of beer and be fine! - Bottas on 'unlucky' ending in Baku

While Lewis Hamilton celebrated his first victory of the season in Baku, Valtteri Bottas could only reflect on one that got away.

Valtteri Bottas at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix   -  Mark Thompson/Getty Images

Valtteri Bottas admitted he may have to drown his sorrows after a late puncture cruelly denied him victory in the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.

The Mercedes driver appeared on course to record his first race triumph of the 2018 season when he led the field going into the closing stages of a dramatic race in Baku.

However, on lap 48 of 51, Bottas ran over a piece of debris on the city track to blow out a back tyre. Team-mate Lewis Hamilton instead went on to take the chequered flag, though in the aftermath he admitted it felt a "bit odd" to be on top of the podium, considering his colleague's misfortune.

Bottas, meanwhile, revealed there was little he could have done to prevent the incident happening - and that he may need more than a few drinks to help him get over it.

"It is difficult to say anything. Everyone saw what happened. It's just unfortunate, unlucky," the Finn told Sky Sports.

"I'll maybe have 10 pints of beer and be fine. I'll get through it, it's part of racing but at the moment it's very painful.

"Street circuits are difficult when there are a lot of crashes. It is always going to be an issue and this time it is just unlucky.

"I had no idea I had run over anything, I didn't see or hear anything."

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff felt it was a bittersweet result, particularly after the incident between the two Red Bulls – which prompted a safety car and pit stops throughout the pack - had worked in Bottas' favour, ensuring he remained ahead of Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel.

"The win was his [Bottas'], he pulled away at the restart and ran over a huge chunk of debris," Wolff said.

"I just feel for him. There was even a tiny chance to win the race on a normal strategy as well."

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