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Jenson Button admits to overreacting following Lewis Hamilton criticism

By CNN Staff
July 21, 2014 -- Updated 1421 GMT (2221 HKT)
Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button are former McLaren teammates.
Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button are former McLaren teammates.
  • Jenson Button said he "overreacted" after criticising Lewis Hamilton
  • The pair collided at the German Grand Prix as Hamilton attempted to pass Button
  • Button had originally hit out at his former McLaren teammate after the race

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(CNN) -- Jenson Button may have hit out at Lewis Hamilton after Sunday's German Grand Prix, but he admitted to overreacting following the former teammates' collision at Hockenheim.

Hamilton started the race 20th on the grid, having crashed out in qualifying with a brake problem, but fought his way back to claim a third-place finish, behind winner and fellow Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg and runner-up Valtteri Bottas.

Hamilton's drive, though, was halted after he damaged his front wing when attempting to pass Button's McLaren on lap 30.

The collision left Button -- who finished eighth -- frustrated, with the Briton pointing out that Hamilton also caught Williams' Valtteri Bottas in the closing stages of the race.

"I don't think I'm the only person he drove into. It's strange when the car is much quicker; you wouldn't think he'd get into such fights," Button told reporters afterwards.

However, after having time to review the race later that night, Button was keen to stress that his criticism in the heat of the moment had been unfair on his former McLaren teammate.

Hamilton himself had earlier offered an apology for his part in the incident, although he believed Button was allowing him to overtake.

"It was really tough to get through the pack safely and I had a bit of a collision with Jenson," Hamilton said on the podium.

"I honestly thought he was opening the door to let me pass -- he's been a bit like that in the last race, for example -- but it was my bad judgment."

Hamilton is now 14 points behind Mercedes teammate Rosberg at the top of the drivers' standings after the German won his home race.

Hamilton was quick to praise his title rival and colleague and the 29-year-old is relishing the challenge of trying to land his second world championship title, six years on from his maiden success.

Read: Rosberg extends title lead with peerless performance

Read: Rosberg signs new contract at Mercedes

Read: Hamilton and Rosberg's rivalry and echo of the past

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