Hamilton was involved in a fierce battle with his Ferrari rival midway through the race which ended when Vettel spun and his front wing exploded.
It left the Mercedes man clear in second place to begin closing the gap to leader Charles Leclerc.
Vettel finished fifth in the race which meant he fell further behind in the Championship race.
And Hamilton claims the German’s team-mate Leclerc was substantially faster in a subtle jibe.
“I don’t even know what lap we were on most of the time,” Hamilton told Channel 4.
“It was a tricky start and Leclerc was so far ahead. He must have been about six or seven tenths quicker than Sebastian.
“But I was able to keep up with at least one of them so I was in the mix.
“I remained hopeful that at least I could be in a fight with someone.
“I live for those moments where you can at least have a battle with someone.
“If you have a lonely race it is quite depressing.”
Hamilton felt sympathetic towards Leclerc after a power failure cost him the victory.
“Charles did a magnificent job all weekend. We couldn’t match their pace,” he added.
“He was just perfect so it was a difficult day for him. All you can do it keep doing your job and see what happens.
“But the fight with Sebastian, he made a small mistake in Turn 1 which created a small opportunity.
“When you go out and the tyres are new you have two or three laps where you can give it everything so I was happy to be in the window with him.
“I left plenty of room but you don’t even know where the other car is.
“You imagine in your peripherals there is a car right there so you leave an imaginary space.