Following last month’s Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, Hamilton said Red Bull’s RB19 is “the fastest car I’ve seen compared to the rest” in F1, arguing it is more dominant than any of the Mercedes cars he won world titles in.
Hamilton won six of his seven world championships during Mercedes’ sustained period of dominance in the V6 turbo hybrid era as the German manufacturer went unbeaten between 2014-2020.
Verstappen already appears to be cruising towards his third consecutive world title after winning two of the first three races amid Red Bull’s 100 percent winning start to 2023.
But the Dutchman, who denied Hamilton a record-breaking eighth world title in the controversial 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, strongly rejected his rival’s recent suggestion.
“I think if you look at the statistics, then those statements are not correct,” Verstappen said via RacingNews365.
“But we also do have a very good car. Nothing wrong with that, of course. Still, we are not as dominant as Mercedes has shown some years.
“I don’t pay much attention to that, that doesn’t get you anywhere.
“Whatever we have done in the eight years that Mercedes is so dominant, we also tried to close the gap. That’s the only thing you can do.”
After watching Verstappen breeze past him in Jeddah, Hamilton said: “I’ve definitely never seen a car so fast.
“When we were fast we weren’t that fast. That’s the fastest car, I think, I’ve seen, especially compared to the rest, I don’t know why or how but he came past me with serious speed.
“I didn’t even bother to block because there was a massive speed difference… yep.”
Hamilton again underlined Red Bull’s superiority over the field after being easily overtaken by Verstappen last time out in Melbourne.
“We’ve got work to do to catch the Red Bull – it came flying past and disappeared,” Hamilton told Sky.
“Max is in another league, his car is so fast. He passed me halfway down the straight and he was like 10 metres ahead. I don’t know how they are so quick on the straight – it’s insane.
“They are just in another league. Until we pick up speed on the straight like they have, and have the crazy downforce they have through the corners, that’s how it’s going to continue.”