Lewis Hamilton on track for more F1 records with Bahrain pole as Max Verstappen admits he cannot be stopped
LEWIS HAMILTON’S rivals have no idea how to stop him from setting more Formula One records.
Hamilton, who has already sewn up a joint-record seventh world title, is on course to set a new benchmark for wins in a season.
Hamilton was unstoppable as he took pole for Sunday's Bahrain Grand Prix and is now poised to win this season’s remaining three races.
If he can do that, it would take his tally to 13 victories in 17 GPs.
That would not only mean he levels Sebastian Vettel and Michael Schumacher's record for the most wins in a year, but it would give him a win percentage of 76.47 per cent — beating Alberto Ascari’s record from 1952.
No wonder then that his nearest competitors are left feeling that the only way they can stop him winning is by locking him up in a cupboard.
Champ Hamilton, 35, said: “I came today and I was like, let’s just have fun and enjoy it.
“That’s the most important thing, to enjoy what you’re doing.
“And with the pressure a little bit off, it’s a bit of a release to go and drive like I just did.
“I have not thought that I could finish the season on 100 pole positions for my career.
“It has already been such an incredible year so anything from now is just an added bonus.
“It is close between the three of us and we have some tricky races ahead of us and it is not something I am thinking about.
“But we will get there eventually and I am pushing as hard as I can for sure.”
Hamilton’s boss at Mercedes, Toto Wolff, praised his driver’s relentless attitude to dominate the sport, despite picking up the title in the last race.
And Wolff also admitted for the first time that he HAS started talks with Hamilton about extending his stay with the team, with a new deal expected to be worth £40million a season.
He added: “It is unbelievable. Lewis won the championship and is still so motivated to show these kinds of performances.
“On the contract, we are talking, which is good. Just little initial steps but we know we have to do something before the end of the year.”
Hamilton starts ahead of team-mate Valtteri Bottas and Red Bull’s Max Verstappen.
And Bottas was left scratching his head as to how he can better the Brit.
He groaned: “I am trying my best — he has got the title this year.
“I am here to win and I know that starting from second on the grid you have all the opportunities. But you need a perfect race and, for sure, we will push hard and try.
“And I am pretty sure that is what Max is thinking as well.”
Verstappen, who starts in third in his Red Bull, says that he cannot take the fight to Hamilton because the Brit has a superior car.
He said: “As Lewis has shown, he is one of the best drivers in F1 but at the moment I don’t have equal chances.
“I am pushing as hard as I can with the material I have got and sometimes it is closer and sometimes it is further away.
"Today it was less competitive.”
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