Red Bull’s Verstappen is in an intense fight with Hamilton as he looks to win his maiden world championship this year and at one stage held a 33-point advantage over his main rival.

But his lead turned into an eight-point deficit after the Dutchman was taken out in a controversial first-lap crash with Hamilton at Silverstone, before he could only finish ninth in Hungary after picking up damage in the first corner carnage.

Although he is experiencing his first proper title battle this year, Verstappen does not believe seven-time world champion Hamilton has the upper hand.

"Personally, I don't think so,” Verstappen said ahead of this weekend’s Belgian Grand Prix.

"The only advantage you can really have is just if you have a faster car. In this sport it's so dominant, when you have a really good car.

"There's so many good drivers in this sport but they don't have the opportunity to fight at the front.

"So if you have seven titles or one or zero, I think at the end of the day, when you have spent a few years in F1, and especially more towards the front, like top five, you know that you have to try and finish every race.

"You know that you have to try and score the most available points every single weekend and I think all of us we always try and do our best and race in the best possible way.

“So I don't really see the advantage there.”


Despite his recent misfortune, Verstappen insists he remains “very positive” about his and Red Bull’s chances of ending Mercedes’ F1 domination and securing the team’s first world title since 2013.

"We had a lot of good races, just the last two didn't go our way, out of our control," Verstappen explained.

“But yeah, I'm very positive. The team is looking forward to getting started again and of course there's still a lot of races to be held. Let's see how it goes.”

And Verstappen is hopeful Red Bull will be more competitive at Spa-Francorchamps compared to recent years due to the straightline speed gains it has made with its RB16B challenger.

“I think Hungary in general they [Mercedes] were very strong, but we have to see again here, for sure they will be quick here,” he said.

"Traditionally this track hasn’t been the best for us because of the long straights, I know we definitely did close the gap a bit in terms of top speed we are still not there.

“But I do think compared to last year our car is a lot better, our top speed is a lot better, but how good it’s going to be against them it’s a bit difficult to say.

“The weather doesn’t look great the whole weekend, a bit rainy, a bit dry, so we’ll have to wait and see how we perform.”