Hamilton: Mercedes “losing 3 and a half tenths on straights”

LE CASTELLET, FRANCE – JUNE 20: Race Winner, Max Verstappen of Netherlands and Red Bull Racing and Second placed Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP stand on the podium during the F1 Grand Prix of France at Circuit Paul Ricard on June 20, 2021 in Le Castellet, France. (Photo by Nicolas Tucat – Pool/Getty Images)

Lewis Hamilton admitted struggling to keep up to Max Verstappen during the battle for the lead of the French Grand Prix.

Red Bull outplayed Mercedes in terms of strategy, which Hamilton admits gave them the victory, but he also says that the Silver Arrows are lacking pace to the Bulls on the straights.

“Undeniably they were much quicker than us this weekend,” he said. “We’re losing three and a half tenths just in a straight line.

“So you saw him fly past me down the straight. There was nothing I could do to keep him behind.

“It’s difficult because the engines are homologated,” he explained. “They’ve obviously brought an upgrade here so we’ve got to dig deep and try and see if we can figure out how to get quicker.”

In a press conference after the race, Hamilton explained that their lack of pace might not be entirely related to engine performance, admitting Mercedes needs to investigate further in order to improve.

“We’ve got to find some pace, that’s for sure,” he said. “Most of the time we lost today was just on the straights. We’ve definitely got to dig deep, try to find out what that is – whether it’s power or drag.”

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