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F1 NEWS 

Horner expects more competition

Lewis Hamilton, Kimi Raikkonen and Mark WebberRed Bull Racing boss Christian Horner believes that his team and Brawn GP, which have won nine out of 10 races this year, can expect to face increasing opposition for victories this season.

Lewis Hamilton became the first driver other than Red Bull pairing Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel and Brawn's Jenson Button to win this year in the Hungarian Grand Prix last month.

Although no other teams are in title contention, Horner says the likes of Ferrari, Williams and McLaren will play a part in the destiny of the championship.

"It throws more cars into the mix," Horner told AUTOSPORT. "It's not going to be just a two-horse race on a weekend now because there are others in it.

"McLaren took a big step forward in Hungary and I think they'll be a factor for the rest of the year. And Williams and Ferrari are looking strong.

"We just have to make sure that in the races we can't win, we take as many points as we can as Mark Webber did [with third place] in Hungary."

Horner is also confident that despite an accelerated development programme in the first half of the season, Red Bull Racing still has car upgrades being worked on that will allow the team to continue to close the gap in the championship to Brawn.

"We've still got a lot in the pipeline," said Horner. "The summer break is a bit inconvenient, but it's a well deserved break and all the guys will come back fully recharged, pumped up and ready to go for Valencia.

"We've got plenty of development ideas coming through. We'll keep trying to bring performance to the car at every race and take every race as it comes. Then the championship will take care of itself."

Horner added that he was surprised at the extent of Brawn's struggles at the Hungaroring, and that he is keen for the team to maintain the momentum it has built up. Over the past three races, Webber has taken 15 points out of Button's championship lead.

"Hungaroring was theoretically one of the Brawn's stronger circuits - it's like Monaco without the barriers so we expected a strong showing from them.

"We're the closest we've been in the constructors' championship since Melbourne, but it's still a long way to go. We need to keep the momentum and close the gap more."

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