“For a second” Hamilton thought he could beat Verstappen




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After finishing the United States GP in formula 1 in second position, Lewis Hamilton revealed that, “for a second”, he thought he would be able to hold Max Verstappen to win in Austinending the longest winless fast of his career.

Hamilton was second behind Verstappen for most of the GP, but ended up jumping to the front when the Dutchman had a problematic stop due to the pressure pistol, being stopped for 11 seconds.

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Once he got back on track, Verstappen was six seconds off Hamilton, with Charles Leclerc in the middle. But the two-time champion managed to overtake the Monegasque, starting a hunt for his 2021 rival, before retaking the lead with seven laps to go.

That was Hamilton’s best chance of winning this year, later saying that “it was wonderful just to be around Max at various times of the season.

“We didn’t know what our pace would be on Sunday. I think in the first stint he was controlling the pace and it was difficult to stay close to him. But in the second phase of the race, after the safety car, I managed to stay close to him, and we had a good time. work on strategy. We were aggressive”.

“I’m really proud of the team. I think everyone did their best to bring the updates over the weekend. For a second I thought I could hold it. But I think that extra medium tire was stronger than us.” .

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG, 2nd position, with his trophy

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG, 2nd position, with his trophy

Photo by: Andy Hone / Motorsport Images

The extra set of medium tires gave Verstappen an advantage over Hamilton in the final laps, who was forced to finish the race on hard compounds. The Brit still managed to stay less than 1s behind his rival for a few laps, but ended the race 5s away.

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff admitted he thought Hamilton had a chance of winning when he saw Verstappen stuck behind Leclerc.

“At one point Hamilton was six seconds ahead, and it looked like he had no way of overtaking, there I felt [que ele poderia vencer]. Lewis had the tire deficit with the hard one, because we didn’t have mediums anymore.”

“Once Max passed Charles and he had no way to fight back, I think it was just a wait and see.”

The W13 had its last update package in Austin, which made Wolff feel an improvement in performance.

“Perhaps at times we expected too many steps, but this weekend was fitting. We had a respectable qualifying. We could have had a better lap, but the drivers didn’t.”

“But it was a step forward. As long as the trajectory is up, we will always have ups and downs.”




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