Vettel's championship hopes are still alive, though, so it will be interesting to see how he and the Ferrari team approaches the Japanese Grand Prix next weekend.
"It was difficult. He was just 19 years old, but I think it was character building in a hard way".
The final Petronas Malaysia Formula 1 Grand Prix race went out with the kind of bang it deserved.
"He drove a truly dominant race, making a sensational pass on Lewis and then really controlling the race from there".
Hamilton seemed nearly certain to significantly extend his lead at the top of the championship, but a combination of his own lack of pace and Vettel's relentless charge into the top four reduced the impact of the qualifying no-show.
"There were a few extra bits available for the cars here and I think we're going to try that again in Suzuka". "I think in the beginning the auto felt good and I saw Lewis was struggling a bit with traction", he said.
In Singapore, Vettel had started from pole only to crash on a rain-soaked first lap as Lewis Hamilton won from fifth on the grid to extend his championship lead. Ferrari teammate Kimi Raikkonen did not even start, despite qualifying second.
"I don't know what he felt (for Vettel yesterday)", said Raikkonen. He maintained this position through to the end of the race, whilst fellow title-challenger Sebastian Vettel fought from last place to fourth.More news: Facebook is testing an Apple Face ID-style facial recognition system
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Lewis Hamilton is anxious about the pace of rival Sebastian Vettel's Ferrari despite extending his championship lead in Malaysia.
To have one driver - a contender for the title, no less - start from the back of the grid and another fail to make the race was, to put it mildly, not the ideal scenario for Ferrari at Sepang.
With five rounds remaining, Hamilton's worry is clearly that despite his healthy championship lead, there might be little Mercedes can do to ensure he has race-winning machinery at his disposal. I have no idea where it will be an issue and where it will be fine.
"There are some issues with the vehicle that we don't fully understand", Hamilton said. "It was the best I could really do", he said.
"There are some real big problems that I can not really explain, but we need to rectify for next year's auto if we are going to have any chance of fighting both these teams next year when they step up their game".
"Great start to a new decade for you, well done".
"You can see we were running slightly less downforce than the others, we don't have the T-wing here for example, and we have found a very good set-up".