The reigning world champion was second-best to Bottas through all three practice sessions and the first two segments of qualifying and was slower after the first runs in Q3 at Portimao.
"However, Stroll was instructed by his team to go to the second flying lap".
There's a popular theory that Hamilton always hides his ultimate pace until the last session of qualifying so that Bottas can't learn from his data.
"With red flags in the second practice there was not that much running so still expecting quite a big increase in the grip for tomorrow".
In an absorbing and revealing post-race interview with Sky Sports F1 - which can be viewed in full in the video above - Hamilton said he was grateful for the historic success.
"I could only ever have dreamed to have been where I am today. It's such an honour to work with you". There is a lot more for us to do, particularly in this insane time with the pandemic, and as a leading business in terms of diversity and inclusivity. "So you never know what to expect but all I try to do is by preparing myself the best way I can". I was still pushing flat out as I came across the line.
But there is still a sense that this one got away from Bottas. The Mercedes driver dominated the race from start to finish as he won with a 25-second lead over his teammate Valtteri Bottas. I thought my race was lost we had a puncture, it just made it worse.
"After that, it was about doing one or two timed laps".
"Mine was a decent lap, not flawless and it has been tricky to get really clear laps", Bottas said. The Mercedes driver's best lap remained unbeaten, the Finn edging Verstappen by 0.595s, but a late flyer from Lando Norris pushed the McLarend river up to third, just ahead of Leclerc and Sainz. I feel young, I feel energised.
"I was starting my lap, and he just finished his lap".
"Wrong call from my side, it's annoying, for sure, but Lewis did a good job at the end".
Hamilton pitted after 40 laps, taking hards and slotting in behind Bottas who led again.
"It is annoying, it's very annoying - that's the word", Bottas added.
"I tried to defend, but Lewis was close and there was nothing really that I could do. It's the most incredible thing to be surrounded by these guys, it really inspires you - the collaboration - there is nothing like it".
Speaking ahead of the following round of the championship in Petrov's native Russia, the former Lotus and Caterham F1 driver was quoted as saying: "In Russia we have a different mentality, and we do not have the problems that Hamilton is talking about".