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Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton told to expect ‘even tougher time’ vs Max Verstappen in Austria

Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes and Great Britain with Valterri Bottas of Mercedes and Finland during the F1 Grand Prix of Turkey at Intercity Istanbul Park on November 15, 2020 in Istanbul, Turkey. (Photo by Peter Fox/Getty Images)

Image source: Peter Fox/Getty Images


Lewis Hamilton has been warned about Red Bull Racing’s threat ahead of the Austrian stretch of the 2021 Formula One World Championship. Red Bull and Max Verstappen have emerged as serious contenders in the Constructors’ and Drivers’ Championships, respectively, this season.

Verstappen currently leads Hamilton by 12 points in the Drivers’ Championship. Meanwhile, Red Bull Racing have a 37 point lead on Mercedes in the Constructors’ Championship.

Sirotkin said: “This is the first moment since Mercedes took over in 2014 that we can really say Red Bull is stronger. [The RB16B] performs well on different tracks, in different conditions and on different tyres. That, in turn, gives them more opportunities to overtake. You could also see in the braking zones that they are really faster on the straights.”

Sirotkin explained that the RB16B would have the advantage at power circuits like the Red Bull Ring, which hosts Sunday’s Styrian Grand Prix.

“With this package, they will go well at power circuits where top speed is even more important than at Paul Ricard,” Sirotkin continued. “Such as Spa-Francorchamps, Monza and soon, to a lesser extent, the Red Bull Ring. So I expect Mercedes to have an even harder time there against Red Bull.”


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