Lewis Hamilton's 'natural ability is fantastic' says Button
When you subscribe we will use the information you provide to send you these newsletters. Sometimes they’ll include recommendations for other related newsletters or services we offer. Our Privacy Notice explains more about how we use your data, and your rights. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Former F1 driver Karun Chandhok believes comparing the Red Bull Ring to other circuits on the calendar won’t be a true reflection of what we might see in the title fight for the World Championship this season. Red Bull and Max Verstappen dominated the Styrian Grand Prix last time out, with the Dutchman extending his lead in the standings.
Verstappen opened up the gap to 18 points over Lewis Hamilton heading into round nine this weekend, at the same track as the Styrian Grand Prix, a circuit the Dutchman won at in 2018 and 2019.
“Mercedes aren’t giving up this fight, and this circuit isn’t a good indicator for the rest of the season. It’s a slightly unusual circuit which we have to keep in mind,” Chandhok told Sky Sports F1.
“It’s not a given now that Red Bull are going to be ahead by three-tenths for the rest of the season. The Championship battle is well and truly on.
Fellow Sky pundit Paul Di Resta agreed with his colleague, saying he fully expected Mercedes to close the gap.
Lewis Hamilton unfazed by Max Verstappen’s ‘orange army’
“They can’t admit defeat,” explained the former F1 driver.
“They probably thought they were in a better position come the wins in Portugal and Barcelona.
They had to fast forward and rethink it. We want to see a battle.”
Red Bull have won the last four races on the bounce, with Verstappen’s team-mate Sergio Perez taking a maiden win for the team in Baku, Azerbaijan.
However, despite their pace, Chandhok concluded it may not show the true story of the season.
“It’s about optimising what they can, the race team at the track has to extract every ounce of performance,” Chandhok added.
Max Verstappen brushes off Lewis Hamilton’s Red Bull concerns
Fernando Alonso picks between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen
Lewis Hamilton in the ‘fight’ but admits Red Bull are a step ahead
“Just two races ago, Lewis Hamilton came within a lap and a half of winning the French Grand Prix.
“Had they pitted a lap earlier, they would have been in a better position to win that Grand Prix. memory is short in this paddock.
“For everyone thinking championship battle is over based on last week…it’s not.”
Hamilton was clear to state Mercedes were still in the “fight” for the title this season but admitted Red Bull have a clear advantage.
“They’ve done a great job in these last four races,” admitted Hamilton, in the press conference on Thursday.
“It’s been really difficult for us from Monaco, which obviously was a bit of a disaster,” he continued, “and then the same for Baku, better at France and better last weekend but they have taken a step ahead of us and so we are just working as hard as we can to see if there’s a way we can close that gap.
“But we’re not even halfway through the season so I am still fighting and chasing for this title.”
Source: Read Full Article