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'Verstappen is Hamilton's biggest threat in 2020'

'Verstappen is Hamilton's biggest threat in 2020'

F1 News

'Verstappen is Hamilton's biggest threat in 2020'

'Verstappen is Hamilton's biggest threat in 2020'

Max Verstappen will emerge as the greatest threat to Lewis Hamilton's title hopes in 2020 according to former F1 driver Alexander Wurz.

Hamilton stormed to a fifth world drivers' crown in six years in 2019, finishing the season 87 points clear of his nearest challenger, Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas.

Despite Red Bull ditching Renault for Honda, Verstappen secured career-high totals for race wins, poles and points in 2019 as he broke into the top three of the drivers' championship for the first time, albeit 135 points adrift of Hamilton.

However, former Benetton, McLaren and Williams racer Wurz believes, with Red Bull now fully familiar with Honda, that Verstappen will stand between Hamilton and F1 history next season.

Asked if he expected Hamilton to take a seventh title in 2020 to equal Michael Schumacher, Wurz told Speedweek: "I think so, but it will be difficult because Max Verstappen will make life difficult for him.

"He [Verstappen] can become world champion. With the shape and current group dynamics at Red Bull Racing-Honda. This is a great sign for sport."

Wurz was also asked whether he believed Sebastian Vettel remains fully motivated to compete in F1 after a disappointing 2019 campaign that saw him finish behind new teammate Charles Leclerc in the standings.

"Absolutely," the Austrian said. "He was low because he wasn't comfortable in the car and with the tyres, but he was recovering.

"He moved closer to Leclerc and is hungry again. I noticed that very clearly in personal conversations. He still has enormous capacities.

"I hope Ferrari is fully involved [in 2020] and creates excitement."

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