"I'm not a big sharing person", Vettel said, before opening up. The straight line power of his Mercedes nosed his vehicle in front until Verstappen cut under him at the first corner.
Hamilton, who matches the legendary Juan Manuel Fangio on the all-time list, was making a successful defense of the title which he also sealed in Mexico previous year.
Ricciardo's fury was compounded by the sight of Verstappen, driving the same vehicle, taking top spot on the podium in Mexico for the second year in a row.
The 1-2 start will be the first for Red Bull since the start of the hybrid engine era in 2014.
While the race here may not have gone to script for Hamilton, Vettel has been unable to live with his rival during the second half of a spellbinding campaign by the Mercedes man.
"Today's race was not the best way to finish the season for Mercedes in a race like that, but whatever, it doesn't matter - who cares", he added.
Hamilton secured his fifth career championship with a fourth-place finish.
Since he announced his shock move from Red Bull to Renault for 2019, his results have made for sorry reading: DNF, DNF, 6th, 6th, 4th, DNF, DNF.
A defeated Ricciardo took aim at his vehicle after a hydraulics failure forced him out of the race with only 10 laps to go while in podium position.
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The rivalry within the Red Bull ranks has not escaped Vettel's attention either.
Vettel will have the small consolation of beating Hamilton in the title-clinching race, passing him about midway through on a run down the long straight in a test of power between F1's top two teams. Their teams are still battling for the constructor's championship.
For the second year in succession, Vettel has watched Hamilton sew up the title with two rounds to spare.
"He drove superb all year".
Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton, of Britain, steers his vehicle during the Formula One Mexico Grand Prix auto race at the Hermanos Rodriguez racetrack in Mexico City, Sunday, Oct. 28, 2018.
Ferrari hasn't won the driver's championship since 2007 and Hamilton gave a nod of respect to the season title fight with Vettel. "Five (championships) is something incredible". "The pressure that he would be under. that's a lot to ride on one's shoulders".
"It's a bittersweet victory in that it is fantastic for Max (Verstappen, race winner) to have driven an outstanding race - absolutely outstanding race, but I'm pretty confident that Daniel would have been able to hold off Sebastian (Vettel) over those remaining laps".
Since his torrid weekend at the Monaco Grand Prix earlier this year, where he crashed out in final practice and was unable to take part in qualifying - giving teammate Red Bull teammate Daniel Ricciardo an easy run to pole position and the eventual win - Verstappen has turned his season around, scoring two victories and seven podiums.
"The auto. I'll let Gasly drive it, I'm done with it".