Verstappen is on course to secure his third consecutive drivers’ title, building up a 53-point lead over Red Bull teammate Sergio Perez.
After an intense fight with Hamilton in 2021, which ended in controversy, Verstappen’s subsequent two seasons have been relatively unchallenged.
Ferrari posed a serious threat, pace-wise, in 2022, but Verstappen’s consistency, combined with Red Bull’s sharpness on the pit wall made it a comfortable season.
In F1 2023, Red Bull have the quickest car by a significant margin, giving Verstappen an open goal to win this year’s title.
Speaking after his latest win at the Spanish Grand Prix, Verstappen was asked if he’d be excited by another title battle with Hamilton, and potentially George Russell.
“Yeah, I think it’s great for the sport in general, right, if you have more teams fighting upfront,” he said. “That’s, I think, what they want to achieve so honestly that would be amazing, to have more drivers really up there, and hopefully throughout the year it will already get closer and maybe next year there are more teams really up there.”
After a lacklustre start to the year, Mercedes appear to be back on track following their recent substantial upgrade package.
The German manufacturer secured their first double-podium finish of the year in Barcelona, finishing second and third.
Hamilton is eyeing 2024 as Mercedes’ year to challenge Red Bull “from day one”.
“I am focused on making sure we have the car next year to challenge Red Bull from day one,” he added.
“I am working as hard as I can with this team and I see so much strength with the team. They are still so hungry.
“These guys will take two seconds to enjoy themselves on Sunday and then they will be back in the books trying to figure out how we can win the next race and that is what I love about them.”