Lewis Hamilton says Mercedes has plenty of performance in hand and will start to work on its pace in Bahrain.

After completing the most laps of any team at the first test in Jerez, Mercedes again started strongly on the first day of the second test before a braking issue stopped Hamilton's running at 74 laps. After finishing the day third quickest despite that problem, Hamilton said reliability had always been the focus up until now but that it would soon switch to outright pace.

"In the first test we were obviously just trying to get mileage on the car and not really focusing on any of the performance of the car," Hamilton said. "We will begin to now at the test we'll start running here. Today was kind of a test again for all the reliability things but it's a good thing because you want issues to come up because obviously you don't want them to happen when the season starts. Even though it's kind of a downer if something does stop you during the day, you actually do want that so the guys can get on it."

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Asked if there was more performance available to Mercedes from its power unit, Hamilton confirmed the team was running with the engine turned down.

"We can [turn it up] if we need to, but we don't need to right now. I have no idea [how much], there are so many different engine maps I don't know which one it is; they just tell me to put it in one. But I'm told there is more..."

And Hamilton admitted the reliability Mercedes has been able to show so far leaves him confident ahead of the start of the season.

"It's very difficult to know where we are in terms of performance but in terms of going the distance we are there at the front ... Of course when you take a step away and look at the whole picture we are the top of the mileage. I'm really happy with that because it's down to all the hard work that everyone has put in at the factory and we're going to just keep churning away."