Lewis Hamilton is avoiding having any “weak” thoughts about his Formula 1 title chances this year and remains confident Mercedes has a car capable of winning this year’s championship. 

Hamilton struggled across the Canadian Grand Prix weekend - at a venue renowned as being one of his strongest circuits - and battled an overheating car during the early stages of Sunday’s race, while chief title rival Sebastian Vettel claimed a dominant win to replace the Briton at the top of the drivers’ standings. 

When asked if he was beginning to worry Mercedes might not have a strong enough package to allow him to win a fifth title, Hamilton replied: “I don't let that get into my mind, no. That would be the first sign of weakness, and my mind is not weak. I'm still here to win, I still believe we can win. 

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“I have complete confidence in my guys and I'm putting that energy towards them. If you think of tennis, or golf, or whatever, in tennis if you look across the net and think 'I might lose this,' you've already lost.

“It doesn't matter where I start on the grid, I don't look at any driver and think, 'I might lose to that person.' I'm like, 'How can I beat them? How can I be better?' And I'm going to keep doing that until I die.”

Although he is remaining positive about his championship hopes, Hamilton feels Mercedes no longer boasts the best car on the grid, after Ferrari and Red Bull made significant progress over the winter. 

“I think we've got potential in this car,” he said. “When you guys are writing stories, I think last year there was 'Mercedes had the best car' and all those different things - and ultimately we did the better job.

“You probably shouldn't be writing that right now, because we are not always outperforming the others, but also it's very close. The Red Bulls are in the mix every now and then, Ferrari have so far been the most consistent, but there's a lot of races to come.”

Hamilton took back-to-back wins in Baku and Spain to move into the championship lead but has slipped back behind Vettel in the title race after he was beaten by Red Bull and Ferrari in Monaco and finished a distant fifth in Montreal

“It's definitely tough when you feel like you have done everything right and you don't get the result,” he said. 

“Every single person within the team feels the pain, but we win and we lose together, so it's just about lifting each other up, pulling together. There's still a long, long way to go. There are good days and bad days ahead.

“We can't guess when they are going to be, but all we can do is try to prepare the best we can, try to minimise the bad days, the losses, and capitalise on the big days.”

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