Max Verstappen says it didn’t come as a “shock” that he lapped Lewis Hamilton at Imola as Mercedes “have been gradual all 12 months”.
Final season Verstappen was passing Hamilton for race wins and World titles, this 12 months his one overtake on the Briton was due to blue flags.
Whereas Verstappen scored most factors on the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, successful the dash qualifying, placing within the quickest lap of the grand prix and successful the race forward of his team-mate Sergio Perez, Hamilton had a weekend to neglect.
The seven-time World Champion lined up 14th on the grid and made up only one place your complete grand prix, up to now off the tempo that he was lapped by Verstappen.
Requested how that felt, the Dutchman stated whereas it didn’t come as a shock, he feels no completely different about lapping Hamilton than he does some other backmarker.
He stated: “I imply, they’ve been gradual all 12 months so it’s probably not a shock or I really feel comfortable lapping Lewis in comparison with anybody else.
“However it’s what it’s.”
As for Hamilton, he was additionally requested how he felt watching the Purple Bull driver go by.
“This reveals how mistaken we’ve bought it,” he merely stated.
Hamilton was one in all 9 drivers that Verstappen lapped on Sunday, the Purple Bull driver placing half the finishers a lap down such was his tempo across the Imola circuit.
However passing them wasn’t at all times simple on condition that whereas the racing line was dry, going off it meant placing slick tyres on a humid patch. And never all backmarkers gave him the complete racing line through which to move.
“A few of them stayed on the dry line,” Verstappen stated, “and I needed to move them on the moist patches.
“That wasn’t superb, however it’s what it’s. I imply, simply must cope with it. However once more, it’s simple to then go off the monitor.”
Sunday’s outcome at Imola has elevated Verstappen to second within the Drivers’ Championship, 27 factors behind Charles Leclerc, whereas Hamilton has fallen to seventh.
The Mercedes driver is 58 factors off the tempo and says there may be “no query” that his possibilities of combating for this 12 months’s World title are already over.