Lewis Hamilton fears his calls for Mercedes upgrade will be ignored despite falling behind F1 leader Max Verstappen

LEWIS HAMILTON has called on Mercedes to change tack and deliver an upgrade to make his title fight with Max Verstappen more 'exciting'.

The Mercs have utterly dominated Formula One in the hybrid era but look set to lose their 100 per cent championship record in its final year.

Many teams are turning their attention to the 2022 rule change that will see a complete overhaul of many aspects of the car.

Among them are Mercedes, who have slipped behind Red Bull while allowing their 2021 car to go without serious development since the season began.

Max Verstappen's 18-point title lead has grown with back-to-back wins and Hamilton has asked his team for a rethink.

He said after Sunday's Styrian Grand Prix: “I won’t question the team’s logic and how they got through with their process.

“I would love to have … an upgrade. We would love an upgrade, but I don’t think it’s in the pipeline at the moment.

“We are down on a few areas. It was close at the beginning of the season and if we both – Red Bull and us – had the same performance as we did in those first four races then perhaps it would be a little more exciting.

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“They have taken a decent step forwards and we will work as hard as we can to manoeuvre around it, but in terms of baseline performance this is what we’ve got.”

Hamilton admitted it was 'impossible' to keep up with Verstappen as he came home a distant second at Red Bull Ring.

With plenty of the season still to run, the 36-year-old has vowed not to give up despite four consecutive victories for his rival's team.

But Red Bull boss Christian Horner has outlined his belief that the tide has turned against Hamilton as Verstappen is simply a better driver.

The 47-year-old told RacingNews365: "I think Verstappen is the best, and George Russell’s performance at Mercedes confirmed that for me.

"Max and Lewis stand out for me but, while we should definitely not be blind to what Hamilton has achieved, he does have a good package at his disposal.

"Max has to get more out of his car. At Mercedes, a Williams driver can qualify himself directly on the front row and Russell almost won the race. 

"However, if at Red Bull someone has to get into Verstappen’s car, for example if Max had corona, then nobody will reach his level."

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