Lewis Hamilton apologises to Mercedes for profane radio messages during Dutch Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton has apologised for the profane radio message he sent to his Mercedes team during the Dutch Grand Prix, but said he would not apologise for being passionate in the car.

Hamilton vented his frustration after Mercedes opted not to pit him under a late safety car -- a decision that effectively left him as a sitting duck to be overtaken by race winner Max Verstappen, teammate George Russell and Ferrari's Charles Leclerc.

"I can't believe you guys f------ screwed me," Hamilton said over the radio after falling down the order. "I can't tell you how pissed I am."

Hamilton, who went on to finish fourth, apologised to his team for the comments after the race but defended his frustration.

"I don't want to apologise for my passion because that's just how I am made and I don't always get it right," he said. "I am sorry for my team for what I said because it was just an amazing moment but I want to look at the glass half full.

"We have got so many positives to take from this weekend. Yes, I got fourth in the end, but the car felt great. If the car feels like this and the other races we're going to be fighting for a win. And that's amazing.

"The pit stops were great. It was the fastest pit stops the team had done all year. Honestly I was so jeed up from that I thought right these guys were on. I am on it, the strategy was great but anyway we just keep looking forwards and hope for a better race."

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff said there were no hard feelings over the comments.

"You get emotional," he said. "I do too in the race and when you are the driver in the car, it just comes out of you and you can't even stop it.

"We are the trash bin, the sick bag in the airplane, and we are taking all of that because we need to. That is how it has always been in a relationship between frustrated driver and the pit wall.

"So we have sat together, we discussed the race strategy. I think this morning we decided to take a risk, it really backfired for him but I think overall, the circumstances and having Max behind him, that was totally unpleasant but there are more positives to take and this is what we have also chatted about; the car is fast here."

To add to Hamilton's woes, Mercedes opted to pit his teammate George Russell for soft tyres under the safety car to split strategies, meaning Verstappen was the first car behind him at the restart and able to take the lead into Turn 1.

Hamilton, who was ahead of Russell on track, said he realised his chances had slipped away when he saw the soft tyres ready for his teammate in the pits.

"I have not had a lot of time to think about it," Hamilton added. "At the beginning of the day, we talked about taking a risk of going on to a one-stop. There was no discussion of like if we pit 20 laps from the end if there was a safety car.

"Honestly when that came out, I just followed the direction I thought I didn't think anyone was going to stop.

"When I went past my pit box I saw the soft tyres were out and I saw what was happening to George and I was like, 'Hang on a second,' and my hopes faded a bit."

Wolff explained that the team decided to split the strategy at the final safety car in the belief that it needed to take a risk to stand a chance of winning the race and that Hamilton's strategy might give him a shot at victory.

"We just split the strategy," Wolff said. "If we would have left both out on the same tyre we would have had [Russell as] the blocker and two cars in the front, but if the new tyre was really much faster then both the cars may have been eaten up, also maybe by Leclerc, and everyone else who came behind.

"So we split the strategy, kept track position and maybe the car is fast enough to do this rather than to take any other decision.

"The thinking that we had [with Lewis] was that we had a medium [tyre] that had five racing laps on plus track position, and we took that decision. I don't think that on a par with the same tyre we could have overtaken the Red Bull with the straight line speed.

"We've seen that with [Carlos] Sainz that we aren't really able to pass him at the beginning, so that was the call. Every single day of my life I would rather risk everything for winning the race rather than cementing in second and third."