Hamilton will begin the race from 10th, with teammate George Russell third, behind Charles Leclerc and Max Verstappen.

Hamilton’s disappointing Q2 elimination came amid the challenging tyre and temperature conditions on the brand-new track.

“It remains a mystery,” Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff reacted to Sky. 

“Having the tyres in the right window and you can see the difference. We saw it in Free Practice 3. Very difficult to understand.”

Wolff explained Hamilton’s stark radio claim that he couldn’t go faster: “Yeah, because he didn’t have any more grip. 

“We are really talking about four or five degrees of temperature difference between grip and no grip. 

“You can see some teams - the McLarens - who play in the front and are out in Q1. And the Ferraris put in stunning laps, both of them half a second ahead of everybody else.”

A disappointed Hamilton described his feeling in the W14: “Not that great. 

“Yesterday was better, we were relatively competitive. We made changes overnight. 

“Q3 was poor, it put me on the back foot and I was just trying to recover, basically, in qualifying which is never the place to do so. 

“I struggled with grip. The car just wasn’t working for me. It’s definitely difficult when you can’t even get through Q2.”

Grand Prix Foundations: Tyres at the Las Vegas GP

Hamilton predicted how his race will go: “My guess is as good as yours. 

“One, with the car. Also, tyre graining. Everyone had tyre graining, we had massive tyre graining. We had more tyre graining in Q3. 

“How you manage it - where you push, where you don’t - will be key. It’s impressive watching Ferrari today, it’s a quick car.”

Russell beginning the grand prix from the second row will at least give Mercedes some hope.

Wolff explained what Russell must do to fight the Red Bull and Ferrari in front of him:  “I think Verstappen and Leclerc are going to be very fast. 

“He needs to manage [the tyres] from there, be patient until the worst part of the tyre has gone.”

And Wolff mentioned the impressive qualifying from Williams, the Mercedes customer team run by his ex-protege James Vowles.

“Yeah, it’s great. Williams, we know they put a lot of heat into their tyres. 

“On tracks that are cold and fast, they’re right there. This is another testament today.”