Hamilton angry that title joy could be put on ice after a strategy error
Lewis Hamilton fears he will be made to wait for his sixth World Championship after accusing Mercedes of costing him a shot at victory in Japan.
Hamilton will move to within one title of Michael Schumacher's record if he wins in Mexico a week next Sunday and Valtteri Bottas, who yesterday claimed his first triumph since April, finishes fifth or lower.
However, the Briton's chances of sewing up the Championship for a third successive year in Mexico City would have been greater but for a questionable strategy decision as he finished third.
For the second time in three races, the Championship leader was aggrieved to have lost out on strategy.
Hamilton, who finished half a second behind the Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel, said to his race engineer Pete Bonnington: "How have I lost that much time? I am basically out of the race."
Mercedes wrapped up a sixth successive Constructors' Championship but Hamilton added: "I don't anticipate it will be Mexico where I win the Championship. We still have a battle."