Lewis Hamilton says he wants to have more race-long battles with Ferrari of the kind he had in the Italian Grand Prix.
Mercedes comfortably out-paced their rivals in the last two races, leaving Hamilton poised to wrap his fifth world championship title. However he was hoping for closer fights with Ferrari.
“When we were having a race like Monza, for me, I loved that race and I would have been happy to have that every race following that,” he said.
“And I thought that was how it was going to be, being that they were so strong in the previous two races. They’ve just lost a lot of performance and then it’s obviously been a little bit difficult for them.
“Of course I would love to have a race right to the end. Every single race I want battles like Monza and other ones that have been like that, those are the races that I love and welcome them more and more. But unfortunately it just isn’t the case and I can’t let that take away from the great job that we’re doing and from our happiness.”
The championship leaders crossed swords during the Russian Grand Prix. Hamilton described racing wheel-to-wheel with his championship rival as the “ultimate challenge”.
“I love that we have those races and those battles and I wish to have more of them. Always being able to go head-to-head with the guy you’re competing with and see who brakes earliest and who falters is the ultimate challenge, really, of your mental stability under that pressure.
“I always welcome them and I’m grateful that we’ve had some of those moments like in the last race which the strategy didn’t work out well but it gave me the opportunity to show my ability at those precious moments.”
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