It is not a secret that Mercedes is behind Red Bull, both in the championships and in technical matters of their respective car. Currently, the German team is in second position with 242 points, while the Austrians have 286 points (44 points ahead of the Germans). For his part, Lewis Hamilton is fighting for the leadership of the drivers' world championship, however, the seven-time world champion is positioned in second place with 150 points, while Max Verstappen has 182 points (a lead of 32 points for the Dutch driver). Being this weekend the British Grand Prix, home of Lewis Hamilton, there are high expectations for the British driver. While Lewis won't be able to take the lead even if Max doesn't finish the race, Hamilton could reduce the Dutchman's lead.
“A lot of work has gone on over the last couple of weeks so I’m hoping that we come back to a circuit that suits us a little bit better and hopefully bodes well for a closer battle at least with the Red Bulls.” The seven-time world champion commented.
“There’s a lot of changes on the car but it’s not a massive update in terms of the big gap that we’ve seen in the races. But it definitely helps us in terms of closing the gap.” Hamilton affirmed. “The first four races we had the car to fight and it was great, but they’ve taken a big step forwards so it’s not been too great the last few races, we’ve not been able to have that fight.”
If we remember, the British driver won 3 of the first 4 races of the season, however, Max Verstappen's Red Bull has swept the last 5, thus increasing his advantage over the British driver and German team race after race. Thanks to the new competition format, sprint races, the new aerodynamic package brought in by Mercedes and his home crowd, Hamilton is confident that they will improve their pace in this race.
“Another element we have is this sprint race that we have, this new format. Of course it’s easy for any of us to get it wrong but there’s opportunities there which is exciting. I’d like to think that the fans – there’s always been talk of the energy and buzz the fans bring.”
“I’m hoping that all those play together, closes that nice gap that those guys have grown out in terms of performance and that enables us to really take it to them this weekend.”
For his part, Valtteri Bottas has confirmed that the new aerodynamic package that Mercedes has brought to Silverstone will help them in the fight for pole position. Recall that pole position will be awarded to the driver who wins the sprint race on Saturday.
“It’s not that huge [the updates]. It’s nothing small. We’ll see. Obviously tomorrow we’ll see how fast the car is over a single lap.” The Finn commented.
“I feel like this year is, for sure, a bit different. With Red Bull, they’ve been quick everywhere, no matter which track so far this year. So we’re definitely not expecting to come in here and suddenly we’re going to be on top.”
“But of course, we would like to think that we’re hopefully in better form than we were in Austria and we have some new bits in the car. Hopefully that will bring us closer to Red Bull.”