Lewis Hamilton says Mercedes will need to bring its “A-Game” if it is to beat Formula 1 rival Red Bull at this weekend’s Hungarian Grand Prix.

After dominating the opening two rounds of the delayed 2020 F1 season in Austria, Mercedes heads to Hungary wary of a renewed threat from Red Bull, which appears its closest challengers so far this year.

Red Bull has traditionally performed well around the tight-and-twisty Hungaroring, while Mercedes has struggled for performance in Budapest in the past, though Hamilton beat Max Verstappen to victory at last year’s event thanks to a bold strategy call by Mercedes.

“It is naturally different to last year’s circuit being that here it’s not a power demanding circuit, it’s more about the downforce efficiency,” Hamilton said.

“If you look at the previous years, the Red Bull has generally gone well. They tend to do even better on the circuits like this and Monaco, where it’s all about the downforce package.

“So, it will definitely close up the whole field and it’s going to be a real challenge and a good battle.

“We already saw some great performance from them during practice in Austria and I think they are still very strong in the race, and here even more so.

“So we really need to bring our A-Game this weekend.”

Valtteri Bottas said he is keen to see how Mercedes compares to its rivals on a high downforce circuit.

“This is a very different type of circuit and we’ve only raced in one track up to now, so we’ve only seen how the teams and the cars have performed in one particular track,” Bottas explained.

“But we’ve got many races to go through and it will be nice to see how it actually compares.

“So far it’s only speculation but it’s a fact there’s fewer straights on this track, more corners and more downforce required. I think typically Red Bull has been quick on the type of corners this track offers, so we’ll see.

“It was, of course, encouraging to see the pace we had, and we expect to be strong here. I’m just keen to finally see on Saturday and Sunday how do we compare to the others in this type of track.”

 

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