Hamilton: Impossible to keep up with Verstappen in ‘lonely’ Styrian GP

Lewis Hamilton found it “impossible” to keep up with Formula 1 title rival Max Verstappen in Sunday’s Styrian Grand Prix, leaving him unsure where Mercedes is losing time to Red Bull.

Verstappen edged out Hamilton by two-tenths of a second in qualifying on Saturday to take pole, leaving the Mercedes driver uncertain of his chances of overtaking come race day.

Verstappen duly delivered a dominant display, leading every single lap of the race to score his fourth victory of the season and extend his lead at the top of the drivers' championship to 18 points.

Hamilton was heard over the radio asking Mercedes if there was anything he could do to reduce the gap, which grew as large as 17 seconds before the seven-time world champion pitted late on to pick up the fastest lap bonus point.

"It was a bit of a lonely race really," Hamilton said.

"I was trying to keep up with those guys but the speed they have, they've obviously made some big improvements over the last couple of races and [it was] impossible to keep up.

"I don't know where we're losing all the time, but I think their long run seems to be a bit better, they seem to be able to continue pulling out those laps.

"And obviously on the straights, we are losing a lot down the straights, or I feel like we are losing a lot down the straights.

"But nonetheless, we got good points as a team today and we just got to keep pushing."

Read Also:

Red Bull's straight-line speed has been a regular talking point throughout the Styrian Grand Prix race weekend, with the team putting its recent gains down to its low-drag set-up and small rear wing and not due to its change in engine at Paul Ricard.

Hamilton called on his Mercedes team to find some performance to strike back at Red Bull and reduce the straight-line speed deficit.

"We need to find some performance, we need an upgrade of some sort, we need to push," Hamilton said.

"I don't know whether it's just the rear wing or whether it's the upgrade in the engine, whatever it may be, but we've got to find some performance."

The result marked Hamilton's fourth race in a row without victory, leaving the Briton in his longest win drought since a six-race spell at the end of 2017 and in early 2018.

Asked about his feelings on the title race with Verstappen pulling further clear, Hamilton said he would "try not to concern myself with that".

"I mean, naturally they are just faster, so there's not a lot that I can do in that respect," Hamilton said.

"I've just got to keep trying to do the best job I can each weekend."

shares
comments
Styrian GP: Verstappen cruises to win ahead of Hamilton
Previous article

Styrian GP: Verstappen cruises to win ahead of Hamilton

Next article

Bottas: Mercedes pitted early to capitalise on slow Perez stop

Bottas: Mercedes pitted early to capitalise on slow Perez stop
Load comments
The historic clues that offer hints of Hamilton’s next move Prime

The historic clues that offer hints of Hamilton’s next move

OPINION: Uncertainty over Lewis Hamilton's future has persisted since the race direction call that denied him an eighth world title in Abu Dhabi last month. But while walking away would be understandable, Hamilton has time and again responded well in the face of adversity and possesses all the tools needed to bounce back stronger than ever

Formula 1
Jan 26, 2022
What the FIA must do to restore F1's credibility Prime

What the FIA must do to restore F1's credibility

OPINION: The first stage of the 2022 Formula 1 pre-season is just over a month away, but the championship is still reeling from the controversial results of last year’s finale. The FIA acknowledges F1 has had its reputation dented as a result, so here’s how it could go about putting things right

Formula 1
Jan 25, 2022
The six subplots to watch in 2022 as a new F1 era begins Prime

The six subplots to watch in 2022 as a new F1 era begins

As Formula 1 prepares to begin a new era of technical regulations in 2022, We pick out six other key elements to follow this season

Formula 1
Jan 24, 2022
Why newly-retired Kimi Raikkonen won't miss F1 Prime

Why newly-retired Kimi Raikkonen won't miss F1

After 349 grand prix starts, 46 fastest laps, 21 wins and one world championship, Kimi Raikkonen has finally called time on his F1 career. In an exclusive interview with Motorsport.com on the eve of his final race, he explains his loathing of paddock politics and reflects on how motorsport has changed over the past two decades.

Formula 1
Jan 23, 2022
Unpacking the technical changes behind F1 2022's rules shake-up Prime

Unpacking the technical changes behind F1 2022's rules shake-up

Formula 1 cars will look very different this year as the long-awaited fresh rules finally arrive with the stated aim of improving its quality of racing. We break down what the return of 'ground effect' aerodynamics - and a flurry of other changes besides - means for the teams, and what fans can expect

Formula 1
Jan 21, 2022
Why F1's new era is still dogged by its old world problems Prime

Why F1's new era is still dogged by its old world problems

OPINION: The 2022 Formula 1 season is just weeks away from getting underway, but instead of focusing on what is to come, the attention still remains on what has been – not least the Abu Dhabi title decider controversy. That, plus other key talking points, must be resolved to allow the series to warmly welcome in its new era

Formula 1
Jan 20, 2022
The Schumacher trait that will give Haas hope in F1 2022 Prime

The Schumacher trait that will give Haas hope in F1 2022

Mick Schumacher’s knack of improving during his second season in a championship was a trademark of his junior formula career, so his progress during his rookie Formula 1 campaign with Haas was encouraging. His target now will be to turn that improvement into results as the team hopes to reap the rewards of sacrificing development in 2021

Formula 1
Jan 19, 2022
The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push Prime

The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push

As the driver of Formula 1’s medical car, Alan van der Merwe’s job is to wait – and hope his skills aren’t needed. James Newbold hears from F1’s lesser-known stalwart.

Formula 1
Jan 15, 2022