Vettel's classy response to Hamilton's title triumph

Sebastian Vettel refused to distract from Lewis Hamilton's Formula One championship win after the Mercedes star sealed a fourth world title at the Mexican Grand Prix.

Ferrari's Vettel had been hoping to chase down Hamilton in the final weeks of the season, but he needed a monumental comeback that was always unlikely after an early collision between the pair on Sunday.

But the German would not allow his disappointment to turn to bitterness, giving credit to Hamilton for his latest F1 triumph.

"It's disappointing, but it's not important what we've done today," Vettel told Sky Sports.

"It's more important what Lewis has done. He's done a superb job all year round, so congratulations to him. It's not about anybody else, today is about him. It's his day."

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Hamilton celebrates with his mum. Pic: Getty

Despite acknowledging Hamilton's achievements, the 30-year-old insisted he would back himself to continue competing with the world champion, who became the outright most successful British driver of all time.

"I don't fear him. I like racing with him," Vettel added.

"Obviously I would have liked that a bit more this year, but they were the better bunch."

The two drivers now have four championships each, and another battle looms with both to remain at Mercedes and Ferrari in 2018.

Watch the incident that ruined both drivers' race:

Asked what Ferrari could have done differently, he simply replied: "What does it matter now?"

Hamilton was shocked by the incident in the immediate aftermath.

"Do you think he hit me deliberately?" he asked his team over the radio, before the stewards declined to hand out any penalties.

Overwhelmed by the championship victory after the race, Hamilton again shifted the blame to Vettel but did not dwell on the clash.

"I had a good start and I don't really know what happened at turn three but I gave him plenty of room," he said.

"But I tried my hardest to come back ... I never gave up. It was not the race I wanted. I kept going right to the end. I just want to lift it up to my family, and god and my team."

with Omnisport