Hungarian GP: Lewis Hamilton 'has climbed impossible mountain' to pull level

Lewis Hamilton in the Hungaroring paddock
Lewis Hamilton is bidding for a record fifth Hungarian Grand Prix victory this weekend
Hungarian Grand Prix
Dates: 22-24 July Venue: Hungaroring
BBC coverage: Preview - Thursday, 21 July (BBC Radio 5 live 21:00 BST); race commentary - Sunday, 24 July (build-up on BBC Radio 5 live from 12:00, race starts at 13:00). Live text commentary of all practice sessions, qualifying and the race on the BBC Sport website

Lewis Hamilton says getting back on level terms with title rival and team-mate Nico Rosberg has felt like "an impossible mountain to climb".

And the Mercedes driver says he aims to go into the summer break, which follows Sunday's race in Hungary and the German GP a week later, leading the standings.

"I had a 43-point gap, which felt like an impossible mountain to climb and I have climbed it," Hamilton said.

"I don't want to fall back. I want to get ahead. That's the next big step."

Hamilton's season got off to a terrible start, with Rosberg winning the first four races as the Briton ran into a series of problems.

But after winning four of the last five races, Hamilton is now just one point behind Rosberg and is determined to continue that form this weekend at the Hungaroring, where he has won four times.

"We are at a place I am strong so I need to utilise that," Hamilton said. "I think I now how to do it, but time will tell whether I am able to.

"The last two years here were not so good so I want to get back on the top step here. I want to go into the break on a positive wave of strength."

Hamilton was on pole in Hungary last year but finished down in sixth after making a poor start and a couple of mistakes in the race.

In 2014, he started from the back after an engine fire in qualifying but recovered to finish third. He last won in Hungary in 2013, his first year with the Mercedes team.

"It definitely is one of my favourite tracks," Hamilton said. "I really like the older circuits. This is a real historic track with some real qualities.

"It is like old houses. They have that character and new houses have no character, but perfect dimensions. It is the same with these tracks.

"They built this in a beautiful landscape, it's got ups and downs, really wonderfully designed corners, after corner after corner, which I love, whereas now they don't do that.

"It's got history, its suits my driving style, the fans seem to like me here, so I have a lot of love. I love Budapest, it is one of the most beautiful cities we go to, stunning architecture.

"It's like a holiday in Disneyland and I get to go on the best rollercoaster ride all weekend."

Drivers' championship standings (after 10 of 21 races)
1. Nico Rosberg (Mercedes) 168 pts
2. Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) 167 pts
3. Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari) 106 pts
4. Daniel Ricciardo (Red Bull) 100 pts
Full standings here

However, Hamilton expressed some concern about the resurfacing of the track, which he believes could make the tyres overheat.

"They've just redone the track and it is black. It is the darkest track we have. I don't know why they would make it black in one of the hottest countries we go to but it is the same for everyone.

"I will try to find a technique that I am able to avoid (tyre) blistering if possible."

Rosberg, meanwhile, said he was not feeling any pressure despite his lead being cut to almost nothing.

"We can all agree up until now I have had the best season of all drivers and that is the fact I am focusing on," the German said.

"The best approach for me is to focus on the races at hand and try to get the best out of the weekend and go for the win.

"It doesn't feel any different to any previous weekend."

Hungarian Grand Prix - BBC Sport coverage

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