Lewis Hamilton has put a brave face on Mercedes' current performance, saying the team are going to work very hard to address the issues that plagued them throughout pre-season testing.
With the seven-time World Champion admitting that it's unlikely Mercedes will fight for victories at the start of the 2022 season, Hamilton knows the period between the end of testing and the start of the Bahrain Grand Prix weekend will be dedicated to trying to unlock more performance from the W13.
"There's a confidence that we can always work through whatever problem that we're facing," Hamilton told media, including RacingNews365.com, when asked about his and the team's confidence levels.
"We've got through the test programme, we've had decent reliability, which has been positive. I think everyone is struggling on this bumpy track.
"We come out of it knowing that we still have a lot of work to do."
Viewed by others:
Is the new Mercedes a 'diva'?
With previous iterations of the Mercedes F1 cars, including the 2021 machine, being branded a 'diva' by some within the team, Hamilton was asked whether the W13 might follow suit.
"I think that was a name that Toto (Wolff, Mercedes team boss) gave our car once. It's not necessarily a word I would have used," he said.
"2022's car regulations have meant, I think for everyone... everyone's sliding around and we all seem to have a little bit less grip than then before – the tyres are worse this year."
But Hamilton went on to try focusing on the positives ahead of the season opener, saying he can feel improvements in how he's able to follow another car on track.
"On the long run, it's physically a lot easier for me," he explained.
"The positive so far [is that] falling behind another car looks a little bit better which is,
hopefully, the right direction.
"I hope we can maybe get some better tyres at some stage. Maybe they'll work better in places that are not so hot.
"But yeah, I'm sure the car will progress through the year and get to a better place."
F1 Podcast: All you need to know after the second pre-season test
At the end of the first pre-season test of 2022 in Barcelona,
Dieter Rencken and Thomas Maher discuss the on- and off-track
developments in Bahrain.