The close defeat at the United States Grand Prix fills Lewis Hamilton with hope for future victories

Lewis Hamilton said his narrow defeat at the United States Grand Prix on Sunday fills him with hope that he can be a winner again.

Max Verstappen’s poor pit stop on lap 35 of 56 at the Circuit of the Americas provided Hamilton with a chance to end a losing streak that dates back to last year’s penultimate round in Saudi Arabia on December 5.

Verstappen was behind Hamilton by a full seven seconds, but after passing Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc with 15 laps to go, the two-time world champion moved on to his former rival Mercedes.

With six laps to go, Hamilton’s silver mirrors were occupied by Verstappen’s fast approaching Red Bull.

And as he approached turn 12 at 300km / h, the Dutch driver launched a successful attack to deny Hamilton his first win of the season.

With just three rounds – in Mexico, Brazil and Abu Dhabi – remaining, Hamilton, 37, is running out of time to make sure his winning record of at least one race in every season he has driven remains intact.

The seven-time world champion said: “We came here with some updates, we narrowed the gap a bit and we were so, so close.

Lewis Hamilton finished second at the United States Grand Prix (Charlie Neibergall / AP)

“I did everything to try to stay ahead, but they were a bit too fast today. A great strategy from us and a great race from Red Bull.

“I’m torn. The car was a handful. It was great to be in the lead. This is something we have worked so hard on as a team throughout the year.

“I’ve had so many hopes, but that’s okay, we’ll hold on tight, we’ll keep pushing and we’ll try to give everything in the next three races. It will come to us at some point. “

Verstappen’s victory came the day after the announcement of the death of Red Bull co-owner Dietrich Mateschitz.

The 78-year-old Austrian billionaire founded the soda company in 1984 and joined Red Bull as an F1 team 21 years later.

“This victory is definitely dedicated to Dietrich and what he did for everyone,” said Verstappen.

Behind Verstappen, teammate Sergio Perez finished fourth as Red Bull secured their first constructors’ championship since 2013 and fifth overall.

Verstappen won his second title in Japan two weeks ago, but his party was overshadowed here after Red Bull broke last year’s financial rules.

“It was all right, but the pit stop was longer than we would have liked and I had to find my way,” said Verstappen after scoring his 13th win of the year equaling the record number of wins in a season. by Michael Schumacher and Sebastian Vettel.

“I had to give it my all and pushed to the limit to return. You want to win the constructors’ title in style and we did it today. “

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