Lewis Hamilton believes he will face a "tough" task trying to reel in Max Verstappen in the next two races in Mexico and Brazil that have become renowned for favouring Red Bull.
At the Circuit of the Americas where Hamilton had previously won on five occasions, the seven-time F1 champion had to settle for second best to Verstappen in the United States Grand Prix.
It means the Mercedes driver now heads to Mexico and Brazil staring at a 12-point deficit which could increase further if Red Bull's past form holds.
Verstappen has twice won at the Circuit Hermanos Rodriguez as the altitude venue has played to Red Bull's strengths.
It might have been three in a row last time out in 2019 after Verstappen started from pole position, only to make contact with Hamilton at the first corner before his race was ruined after suffering a puncture following a lap-four incident with Valtteri Bottas.
Verstappen made up for that soon after with a victory in Brazil that year after finishing second in 2018.
Addressing the title picture and any concern he may be holding in going to the next two races, Hamilton said: "I’m not thinking about it at the moment. I’ve got to be happy with the job that I did [in Austin] and live in the moment.
"Unfortunately, we weren’t quick enough to win the race but we just look forward and take it one race at a time.
"They are two circuits that are very strong for Red Bull so it's going to be tough. We will just try to minimise how strong they can be compared to us and see if we can do a better job."
Hamilton laments "too quick" Verstappen
Hamilton did twice lead in Austin, notably into turn one after making a strong start, which has been an Achilles heel on occasion this season.
Verstappen, however, twice performed the undercut during the race to take victory by just 1.333secs despite a late charge from Hamilton.
Reflecting on the race, Hamilton said: "The goal was to get in the lead and finally I got a good start. I’ve not had as good a start as that for a long time so I was really happy with it.
"Then it was just about staying clean and coming out ahead and holding onto it so it felt good at the time, to get into the lead. I thought this is the best step one.
"But they were just too quick. They were quicker all weekend, on all tyres [in the race].
"Just in the heat, I think the real strength has shone through this weekend, a bit like it has in other places, like Bahrain, this year. So, yeah, I did the best I could with what we had."
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