Lewis Hamilton's 2021 title rival Max Verstappen took pole position at the Austrian Grand Prix on Friday, and is currently sitting on a sizable lead at the top of the standings. The Red Bulls and Ferraris have been dominating the 2022 Formula 1 season, but the seven-time champion still believes that Mercedes can pull off a race victory.

Mercedes had a disastrous start to the current campaign thanks to their inability to control the porpoising on their cars. They started off battling in the midfield, but George Russell has managed to maintain a top-5 finishing streak before his retirement due to a crash in Silverstone last week.

Meanwhile, Hamilton had been struggling a bit more, finishing behind his teammate on most occasions. He pulled off a podium finish in Silverstone, but they are aware that their top three finishes have mostly been due to the fact that the front runners encountered major issues.

Nevertheless, Hamilton was in competitive form in Silverstone, as seen in his battle against Red Bull's Sergio Perez and Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc. They have been working hard to work around their porpoising issues, and it appears as though they have finally managed to make the car a lot more comfortable to drive.

"With a bit more hard work, hopefully we can get closer to having a chance of winning. I truly believe we can get a race win this year," said the Briton, as quoted by the BBC. Unfortunately, both Mercedes drivers crashed out of qualifying in Austria.

Russell will start from fourth place, while Hamilton will be several places further down in ninth. However, there is a sprint race this weekend, and Hamilton has proven how well he can recover from a bad qualifying position. He made some incredible drives from the back of the pack last season, and he will surely be looking to recapture his form this year.

"Earlier this year I definitely wasn't sure we would ever get a win in this car, but that was not the way we like to think," he said, recalling his miserable moments at the start of the season.

Mercedes brought significant upgrades twice this season already, and it remains to be seen if they can indeed make it a three-way battle with Red Bull and Ferrari.

"We have always struggled in Austria so it is going to be hard to win here knowing the combination of corners. But not impossible," added Hamilton.

Lewis Hamilton
Lewis Hamilton celebrated an unexpected third place AFP / Giuseppe CACACE