Lewis Hamilton admits that Ferrari have a power mode available which is out of Mercedes’ reach.
Any such modes were put to good use at the Canadian Grand Prix as Sebastian Vettel took pole for the Scuderia and looked set to end Mercedes’ 100% winning record in 2019 come race day.
However, the German made an error which earned him a five-second penalty after rejoining the track unsafely and forcing Hamilton into evasive action, handing the win to his Mercedes rival.
Similarly to Bahrain, the Silver Arrows got away with one against an SF90 which seems to come into its own on a power-hungry track, and the Brit insists it is this power which his team can’t contend with.
“They were so quick on the straights,” he said via F1i.com. “They definitely have another power mode that we currently don’t have.
“So, all of a sudden they turn up the power and he [Vettel] pulls away massively on the straight, even if I have DRS open.”
As a result, Hamilton sees this as an area of weakness for the W10 which needs working on.
“In the race I know all of a sudden they pick up a lot of pace on the straights [as well] but that’s the name of the game,” he explained.
“They’ve clearly done a great job with their power unit. There used to be a point where Mercedes was ahead in that area by a good chunk.
“We’ve got work to do there. They are ahead of us at the moment there.”
Looking beyond the penalty which allowed him to win in Canada, Hamilton was happy with his performance and how he conducted himself.
“I like to think that I conducted myself in the right manner, and the guys worked so hard collectively and we came out with a good result,” added the Brit.
“We’ve got work to do. We’ve seen how quick the Ferraris were [in Canada], they were right there in the last race [Monaco] as well, so it will be interesting to see how it plays out.
“They’re quicker than us on the straights, they have another level of engine mode that they can go to, particularly in qualifying and also in the race.
“So we’ve definitely got work to do, but at least we’ve got a good fight.”