Hamilton: Pressure of first F1 title shot may be impacting Verstappen

Lewis Hamilton thinks that the pressure of gunning for his first Formula 1 world championship may be having an impact on title rival Max Verstappen.

Hamilton: Pressure of first F1 title shot may be impacting Verstappen

With the pair coming off the back of another controversial collision at the Italian Grand Prix, Hamilton suggests that an element of the way their rivalry has developed is the vast differences in the experience they have.

While Hamilton has won seven titles, and been involved in three more title contests, Verstappen's push this year is the first proper shot at a championship he has had.

And, with the Mercedes driver aware of what he went through in his early F1 years, Hamilton thinks that there are factors that could be weighing down heavy on Verstappen's shoulders.

"Obviously he won't admit to it, and I'm not going to make an assumption, but I remember what it was like when I had my first [title fight] and it definitely mounted up," said the Briton.

"It was difficult. It was intense. I was going through a lot of different emotions, and I didn't always handle it the best. And that's to be expected.

"There's a lot of pressure: you're working in a big team. There's a lot of self expectation and pressure because the desire to win is huge. So I empathise and understand that. But I know that we will continue to grow from this."

Hamilton believes that experience was a critical factor in wheel-to-wheel battles too, especially when it came to knowing when not to keep up the fight for a corner.

"We all have to be smart and know that there is a time where you're not going to make a corner, and it's all about making sure you live to fight the next corner," he said.

"And it's really kind of just through experience you find that balance, and you know that it's not all won on one corner.

"As I said, I know what it's like having your first fight for your first championship, and your eagerness. And you go through lots of different experiences and emotions during that time."

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes

Hamilton confirmed that there is no lasting impact of the neck pain he suffered after the Italian Grand Prix crash, when Verstappen's right rear wheel struck his crash helmet.

He also brushed off comments from Red Bull motorsport advisor Helmut Marko that he had exaggerated his injuries in the aftermath of the accident.

"I don't really listen to what these individuals talk about," said Hamilton. "It's natural when a car lands on your head you're going to have some sort of discomfort.

"As I said, I definitely felt a bit of pain after the race, and then I said I was going to get it checked out.

"I worked with Angela [Cullen, his physio] straight after the race and during the flight, and had check-ups the next day. Then we just worked on it through the week with acupuncture and everything.

"I didn't say I was dying. Of course, I was aware of the fact that in just a millisecond, anything can happen. And so I did feel grateful to come out of it not badly injured. We move on."

Read Also:

shares
comments

Related video

Leclerc not expecting ‘big changes’ from Ferrari F1 power unit upgrade
Previous article

Leclerc not expecting ‘big changes’ from Ferrari F1 power unit upgrade

Next article

Vettel unsure why F1 would ditch traditional Monaco rest day

Vettel unsure why F1 would ditch traditional Monaco rest day
Load comments
How getting sacked from Benetton made Mercedes' Allison Prime

How getting sacked from Benetton made Mercedes' Allison

He’s had a hand in world championship-winning Formula 1 cars for Benetton, Renault and Mercedes, and was also a cog in the Schumacher-Ferrari axis. Having recently ‘moved upstairs’ as Mercedes chief technical officer, James Allison tells Stuart Codling about his career path and why being axed by Benetton was one of the best things that ever happened to him.

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2021
The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback Prime

The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback

It’s easy to look at Robert Kubica’s second Formula 1 career and feel a sense of sadness that he didn’t reach the heights for which he seemed destined. But as Ben Anderson discovered, performance and results are almost meaningless in this context – something more fundamental and incredible happened…

Formula 1
Nov 27, 2021
The humbling changes Ricciardo made to deliver for McLaren Prime

The humbling changes Ricciardo made to deliver for McLaren

From being lapped by his own teammate in Monaco to winning at Monza, it’s been a tumultuous first season at McLaren for Daniel Ricciardo. But, as he tells STUART CODLING, there’s more to the story of his turnaround than having a lovely summer holiday during Formula 1's summer break...

Formula 1
Nov 26, 2021
The potential benefits of losing the F1 constructors' title Prime

The potential benefits of losing the F1 constructors' title

As the battle continues to rage over the F1 2021 drivers' championship, teams up and down the grid are turning their attentions to the prize money attributed to each position in the constructors' standings. But F1's sliding scale rules governing wind tunnel and CFD use will soften the blow for those who miss out on the top places

Formula 1
Nov 25, 2021
The invisible enemy that's made Hamilton's title charge tougher Prime

The invisible enemy that's made Hamilton's title charge tougher

After winning his past few Formula 1 titles as a canter, Lewis Hamilton currently trails Max Verstappen by eight points heading into the final double-header of 2021. Although Red Bull has been his biggest on-track challenge, Hamilton feels that he has just as much to grapple with away from the circuit

Formula 1
Nov 24, 2021
Why F1's inconvenient penalties have to stay Prime

Why F1's inconvenient penalties have to stay

OPINION: Quibbles over the length of time taken by Formula 1's stewards over decisions are entirely valid. But however inconvenient it is, there can be no questioning the importance of having clearly defined rules that everyone understands and can stick to. Recent events have shown that ambiguity could have big consequences

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2021
The mistakes Red Bull cannot afford to repeat in F1 2021's title fight climax Prime

The mistakes Red Bull cannot afford to repeat in F1 2021's title fight climax

OPINION: Red Bull has had Formula 1’s fastest package for most of 2021, but in several of the title run-in events it has wasted the RB16B’s potential. It cannot afford to do so again with Lewis Hamilton motoring back towards Max Verstappen in the drivers’ standings with two rounds remaining

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2021
Qatar Grand Prix driver ratings Prime

Qatar Grand Prix driver ratings

Qatar was a virtual unknown for most as Formula 1 made its inaugural visit to the Gulf state, and tyre management quickly emerged as an even more critical factor than normal. Perhaps then it should come as no surprise that two of the championship's elder statesmen produced standout drives

Formula 1
Nov 22, 2021