‘Verstappen/Hamilton battle up to Honda’

Jamie Woodhouse
Max Verstappen Lewis Hamilton

Mark Webber says Honda will determine Max Verstappen/Lewis Hamilton battle.

Ex-F1 driver Mark Webber says Honda will determine whether or not Max Verstappen can challenge Lewis Hamilton in 2020.

Hamilton goes into the new season searching for a record-equalling seventh World Championship.

Armed with the Mercedes W11, Hamilton is the clear favourite for the title, but in a shortened season he may well have fierce competition.

His team-mate Valtteri Bottas has his eyes firmly on the 2020 title, whilst Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel and in particular Charles Leclerc are strong contenders.

And Red Bull’s Verstappen is also in that conversation and perhaps at the front of the line to challenge Hamilton in the opinion of some.

But if he is to battle with Hamilton for the World Championship, then Webber feels Red Bull’s engine supplier Honda are going to have to provide him with a good enough engine.

He does think though that Verstappen is the only driver who can take the fight to Hamilton, believing Ferrari are not strong enough this year.

Speaking on Ziggo Sport’s F1 Cafe, he said: It will really be between him [Verstappen] and Lewis.

“I don’t see anyone else who can be at that party. Ferrari won’t be there this year. There is no one else who can handle Lewis at the moment but Max.

“I have faith in Milton Keynes, in their aerodynamics and how they operate as a team. It’s just a question of whether Honda will be able to take on Mercedes for an entire season.

“They [Mercedes] probably still have a bit more power, then you can also drive with more downforce and just make your life a little easier”.

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