Lewis Hamilton's 'natural ability is fantastic' says Button
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Lewis Hamilton says he hopes to “close the gap” this weekend at the British Grand Prix, as the seven-time world champion hopes to cut the 32 point gap to Max Verstappen over the weekend.
Hamilton has seven wins to his name around the Silverstone circuit in Formula One, and also admitted recently he’s been putting in the hours on the simulator, something he’s admitted in the past to Express Sport he’s not a fan of.
To add to their advantages this weekend, Mercedes are also looking to bring an upgrade package for the W12, alongside the added bonus of Hamilton’s home fans descending on the circuit.
And Hamilton believes it could be a winning formula across the weekend.
“With all those elements, I hope and pray, yeah,” said Hamilton ahead of the British Grand Prix on Thursday
“Obviously we won’t know until tomorrow, and also another element is this sprint race that we have, this new format, of course, it’s easy for any of us to get it wrong.
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“But there are opportunities there, which is exciting.
“I like to think the fans, there’s always been talk of the energy and the buzz from the fans bring, there’s no doubt when it’s your home Grand Prix and it’s the British crowd, you come with more.
“You’ve got more heat behind you.
“So I’m hoping all of those collated together closes that nice gap that those guys have grown in terms of performance, and it enables us to really take it to them next weekend.”
The British Grand Prix sees a new sprint qualifying format, which sees the top three winners collect championship points, with the result across 17 laps deciding the grid for Sunday’s main event.
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140,000 fans are due across the British Grand Prix weekend, as the UK Government continues to trial big sporting events, with Silverstone being the biggest crowd gathering since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
And Hamilton admitted he was excited to see the home crowd.
“You arrive with this new kind of excitement, but also this kind of nervousness also, because you want to deliver for everyone and you want everyone to have the best weekend.
Mercedes have taken nine consecutive pole positions at Silverstone, to make it 10, Hamilton would have to win the sprint qualifying race on Saturday.
Yet Hamilton said it was a challenge he was embracing.
“Massively looking forward to it,” added Hamilton. “A lot of work has gone on over the past couple of weeks, so I’m hoping that coming back to a circuit that suits us a little better, hopefully, we can have a closer battle with the Red Bulls.”
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