F1: Hamilton welcomes Verstappen title struggle as Red Bull rise to the problem | Racing News


SILVERSTONE: Lewis Hamilton welcomes the prospect of a Formula One title battle with Max Verstappen following the Dutchman’s dramatic victory in Sunday’s torrid 70th Anniversary Grand Prix at Silverstone.
Defending champion and present chief Hamilton, who has a 30-point benefit on the high of the drivers’ standings, praised Verstappen and his Red Bull staff for inflicting a primary defeat on Mercedes in 5 races this yr.
“It’s nice that Max received,” mentioned Hamilton, Speaking within the aftermath of his record-equalling 155th podium end, in second place.
“As I’ve mentioned earlier than I wish to have races and a problem. Obviously, the Red Bull appears to be fairly near us in race circumstances, however that is an excellent factor and it will likely be fascinating to see their development by means of the remainder of the yr.
“I positively is not going to overlook them. We will maintain a detailed eye on them. It’s not going to be simple by any means.”
Hamilton, who shares the podiums report with seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher, is in pursuit of his personal seventh drivers’ title this yr and likewise has the German’s unrivalled haul of 91 GP wins in his sights.
However in sweltering circumstances on Sunday, Red Bull had not solely a superior technique — by selecting to begin Verstappen on hard-compound tyres — but additionally a superior stage of administration of tyre put on, which seems to have turn out to be a weak point of Mercedes’ in any other case flawless automotive this yr.
Hamilton had solely received the British GP on the identical monitor every week earlier after surviving a last-lap puncture as Verstappen closed in.
Mercedes chief Toto Wolff conceded his staff had didn’t ship after beginning with Valtteri Bottas on pole and Hamilton second of their 67th entrance row lockout.
Verstappen began fourth and received by 11 seconds, a luxurious that afforded him a number of light-hearted quips on his strategy to victory and a poor signal for Mercedes heading into the weekend’s Spanish GP in Barcelona.
“It was a troublesome day within the workplace,” admitted Wolff. “We have a handful of days to search out out what precisely brought on our points right now, give you options, take a look at them in Barcelona after which hopefully have a greater race on Sunday.
“It shall be difficult, however we have had nowadays prior to now and got here out stronger and I’m actually wanting ahead to Barcelona. The days the place we lose are the times the place we be taught essentially the most.”
The considerably haunted appears to be like on the Mercedes pit wall as their Pirelli tyres blistered over and once more advised its personal story and Red Bull staff chief Christian Horner, advised their automotive, with its phenomenal ranges of downforce, was virtually too sturdy and too quick for the softer tyres launched.
“Mercedes are working extra downforce on their automotive, much more wing than we’re carrying they usually blistered their tyres 5 laps after the primary pit cease — and Max was taking it simple at that time,” Horner mentioned.
Until Sunday, Hamilton and Mercedes seemed to be heading in the right direction for a serene run in the direction of extra championship triumphs, however Verstappen’s ninth profession win, every week earlier than he returns to the scene of his first, has signalled that nothing will be taken as a right.



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