The seven-time world champion suffered a shock Q1 elimination in Jeddah to mark his worst qualifying performance on pure pace since the 2009 British Grand Prix but recovered into the points after running long into the first stint on Hard tyres and capitalising on an early Safety Car period. 

Hamilton was unable to pit under a late Virtual Safety Car period due to the pitlane being closed, meaning he dropped back down the order when he finally made his mandatory stop when the VSC ended at the end of Lap 41. From there, Hamilton battled back through the field to secure the final point on offer.

 

But Hamilton admitted he needs “more grip and more power” from his Mercedes after a tricky second race of the season. 

“Right now we’re not fighting for the top step as you know, we’re so far off the guys up ahead,” Hamilton conceded. “We’ve got a lot of work to do.

“We need more grip and we need more power. Balance-wise, the car felt good, but just not fast enough. The end result isn’t great but the race was going relatively well. 

“We were unlucky with how the VSC played out at the end but I was giving it everything.” 

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Hamilton noted the impressive engine gains made by Ferrari as he revealed he was struggling to keep up with Kevin Magnussen’s Haas in the closing stages of the race.

“Not much has changed since the last race but it's only been two days,” he replied when asked if Mercedes has been able to make any improvements with its troublesome W13. 

“All I know today is that I couldn't keep up the Haas in the end. The power they have, they came slingshotting past me when I overtook Magnussen earlier in the race. 

“We have a lot of work to do for sure but I know I have got a great team and we will keep our heads down and try to improve.”