Lewis Hamilton reveals what Mercedes W14 is in desperate need of

Lewis Hamilton finished 51 seconds behind race winner Max Verstappen at last weekend's Bahrain Grand Prix.

Seven-time World Champion Lewis Hamilton has warned Mercedes that they must find some downforce “ASAP” if they are to challenge the frontrunners, with the 38-year-old having finished the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix in fifth.

It was a disappointing weekend for Mercedes, who have seemingly slipped to fourth in the pecking order behind Aston Martin, given that Fernando Alonso claimed third at the Bahrain International Circuit.

Just like last season, Mercedes seemed stronger in the race than they did in qualifying; however, Hamilton still ended the first race of the season 51 seconds behind winner Max Verstappen.

The 103-time Grand Prix winner was at least the top Mercedes driver, with George Russell having finished seventh.

READ: Max Verstappen admits he was surprised in Bahrain

Alonso, though, was the top Mercedes-powered driver, highlighting how big a step Aston Martin has taken over the recent winter break.

Mercedes were somewhat on a pair with Ferrari during the race but were still comfortably slower than the Italians during qualifying, meaning the Brackley-based team have an awful lot of work to do.

Hamilton is aware of this and admitted that the team must “push massively” to get into podium contention, something they are comfortably off currently.

“The team did a great job with the pit stops, just unfortunately, the car is just not there at the moment, we are lacking downforce and we have just got to work really hard to try and add that ASAP,” Hamilton said.

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“Anything that is in the wind tunnel, we need it tomorrow. We need to push massively to close that gap.”

Despite revealing that the team needs to find more performance, the Brit was pleased with his race, given that he gave “absolutely everything” to finish fifth.

“Yeah definitely, I gave it absolutely everything,” Hamilton continued.

“I am generally happy with the race, it was much better with the qualifying and I am happy with my performance.”

Team principal Toto Wolff certainly wasn’t pleased after the race, with the Austrian recognising just how much work the Germans have to do.

READ: ‘It is also dangerous’: Ex-F1 driver on concern about boring Red Bull domination

Wolff explained that the team are “looking at everything” to maximise the performance from the W14’s current concept, something which is perhaps going to be changed during 2023.

“We are super-critical of ourselves and what we need to achieve. We are looking at everything to get it right with the concept,” Wolff said.

“Everybody in the engineering team thinks like that and we just need to get our act together.”