F1: Can Lewis Hamilton do it again?
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Championship leader Max Verstappen says he doesn’t concern himself too much with what is said by his main title rivals Mercedes and insisted he just wants to better Red Bull as a team this season.
After Verstappen enjoyed a third lights-to-flag win at the Styrian Grand Prix, finishing 35 seconds clear of Hamilton, the Briton was left perplexed as to how Mercedes had no answers to Red Bull’s pace.
“I was trying to keep up with those guys but the speed they have, they have obviously made some improvements over the last couple of races and it was impossible to keep up,” said the seven-time world champion after the race.
“I don’t know where we are losing all the time but their long runs seem to be better, they seem to be able to continue putting out those laps and on the straight, we lose a lot, or it feels like we lose a lot down the straights.”
The win gave Verstappen an 18 point lead heading into the Austrian Grand Prix, and Red Bull a healthy 40 point lead over Hamilton and Mercedes.
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However, when asked by Express Sport if the Dutchman believes his main title rivals were exaggerating the difference between the performance of the Red Bull and Mercedes, the 23-year-old said it didn’t much matter.
“To be honest, I just focus on our team, I want to try and do the best with what I can do within ourselves,” said Verstappen during Thursday’s press conference ahead of the Austrian Grand Prix.
“I think that’s the only thing you can control, and whatever has been said, doesn’t bring much.
“So it’s just important to just keep focusing on yourself.”
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Hamilton meanwhile admitted he was aware Mercedes had an upgrade planned for its 2021 car, despite indicating they didn’t after the first race at the Red Bull Ring.
After finishing second he had complained that the team needed to bring some sort of upgrade to challenge Red Bull this season, who he claimed are constantly upgrading their car.
Yet, earlier this week a different story came out of the Mercedes camp, with the team’s chief technical officer James Allison confirming new parts were coming for the W12.
“I knew that we had that upgrade coming,” Hamilton stated.
“At the end of the day, everyone is working absolutely flat-out. We’re learning more and more about this car.
“We’re discovering more things – where we need to push more and extract more and I have all the confidence in the team that we will do over the course of time.”
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