'Realist' Hamilton says Ferrari now 'very hard to beat'

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Lewis Hamilton believes Ferrari now has the upper hand over Mercedes, insisting the Scuderia has ironed out the weaknesses of its SF90 which now "works everywhere" according to the reigning world champion.

Ferrari secured a hat-trick of wins in Singapore, a venue where the Italian outfit was expected to under-perform relative to Mercedes and Red Bull given the limits displayed previously by its SF90 on twisty, high-downforce tracks.

But the House of Maranello's engineers obviously did some very productive soul searching and decisive aerodynamic work on their 2019 contender, to the point where Charles Leclerc and Sebastian Vettel can win anywhere. And that's a troubling prospect for Hamilton.

"I tend to think I am a realist and I see the situation we are in," said the Briton after Sunday's defeat.

"They have come up with some sort of upgrade that has perhaps... maybe they had a good car all year it just maybe wasn't working in the right window, who knows.

"It is unlikely they brought a massive massive upgrade that has brought 20/30 points [of downforce] which is performance wise what they have taken here."

Looking forward, the five-time world champion says Mercedes has a big challenge on its hands, and his team needs to regroup and react accordingly.

"Clearly their car works really well everywhere now. It will be very hard to beat them, particularly as they are so quick on the straights," added Hamilton.

"We can't compete with them on the straights at the moment, but we have won before with not the best car, so it is just really how we deliver over the weekend.

"At the moment they are delivering better on both ends. If we are better in the operation area then we can just pip them."

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