Helmut Marko says Hamilton is Verstappen’s strongest challenger

© LAT Images for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd

Red Bull advisor Dr Helmut Marko says he sees Lewis Hamilton as a stronger challenger to Max Verstappen in 2023, than Charles Leclerc.

Although Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc was the only driver in 2022 capable of challenging Max Verstappen, Red Bull’s advisor Dr Helmut Marko thinks the Dutchman’s strongest rival in 2023 will be Lewis Hamilton.

“Leclerc was very strong in qualifying,” Marko said.

“But he was prone to making mistakes. I see Hamilton as a stronger challenger for 2023.

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“He has a clear advantage in terms of experience, he can motivate himself incredibly well and I’m also convinced that Mercedes will put a better car on the track next year,” the Austrian concluded.

Mercedes did improve their car significantly throughout 2022, but it remains to be seen if the team will be able to produce a car capable of challenging Red Bull on a consistent basis next year.

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