“It’s been a good day, must better than yesterday,” he professed. “Yesterday was a difficult day, in qualifying, to qualify 13th is not great. It made the race much, much harder for us.
“The first 20 laps were a little bit difficult because we were in a DRS train. But after that I was able to start chipping away. I really enjoy battling with different cars, it was great at the end to catch the Alpine and overtake Ferrari for example.”
Hamilton’s Mercedes team-mate George Russell was able to reach Q3, qualifying sixth, and that paved the way for him to take the chequered flag in a solid fourth.
With Russell having pitted for fresher tires and approaching the back of his long-running team-mate, Hamilton willingly moved over for his younger partner to enable him to continue his charge.
“George and I, he started sixth, so we were in a bit of a different race,” he continued. “Of course, I’m a team player, I want to give the team the maximum points.”
Despite the set-back of Saturday, Hamilton added that it felt “mega” to be making forward advances up the order after a race in Baku the previous weekend where he felt he was going “backwards”.
“It was mega. Just to be… the sprint race in the last race, I was going backwards. It’s really, really demoralising when you’re going backwards, it’s really tough.
“So it was really great to have pace, see the cars up ahead and seeing the progress, knowing that I’ll be battling with people. I had a couple of great overtakes as well. That’s what I live for.”
After Russell had poached a place from Carlos Sainz earlier on, Hamilton’s final overtake on the race witnessed him claim sixth from the sister Ferrari of Charles Leclerc with a tight move into Turn 11.
While his qualifying woes made his race harder, Hamilton admits he relishes days where he has to overcome adversity to achieve a good result.
“It felt great to see the Ferrari up ahead and just catching it bit by bit,” the Mercedes driver expressed. “It’s pretty impressive that they’re so quick in a single lap but I don’t know what was going on in the race.
“But to come from 13th and get back into the hustle with them was great. I think if I had qualified where I should’ve, I probably would’ve had a much smoother and easier day. But I like days like this where there’s a bit of adversity and you have to put it all together and deliver.”
Mercedes’ strong Sunday recovery meant it outscored both Aston Martin and Ferrari in the Constructors’ Championship.
Although Fernando Alonso notched a fourth podium in five races, Lance Stroll’s failure to score meant Mercedes reduced the deficit to the Silverstone side to only six points, with the German marque also possessing an 18-point advantage over Ferrari.
Formula 1’s return to Europe in two weeks with the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix at Imola is set to witness Mercedes begin a significant redevelopment of its troubled W14 car.
Mercedes chief Toto Wolff has confirmed that through the coming races the Brackley-based operation plan to introduce a new floor and suspension elements as well as revised bodywork.