Lewis Hamilton has revealed how a self-inflicted "limitation" cost him performance in the second Abu Dhabi Grand Prix F1 practice session.
The Mercedes topped a 1-2 in the opening session, but could only manage fourth place in the second, more representative session at Yas Marina.
Hamilton ended up behind Max Verstappen, George Russell and Charles Leclerc but was within half-a-second, with the long run pace looking strong.
However, the seven-time World Champion believes some set-up changes he requested between the two was the reason for his slipping back down the order.
Viewed by others:
Hamilton self-inflicted 'limitation'
"[First practice] felt pretty good, but in FP2 the balance was quite a bit off," Hamilton explained to media, including RacingNews365.com.
"I made some changes between P1 and P2 and they weren't the right ones, it was a bit of a struggle with a lot of oversteer and that was mostly my limitation.
"We made some changes over the [ride] height, but otherwise we were relatively competitive – we were right there.
"[My race pace] was very good, but I don't know where we stand up [to others].
"It looks to be a little closer – I think the Red Bulls were a bit quicker here which was expected, as this wasn't expected to be our strongest race, so we'll work hard overnight.
"We're generally right there, so hopefully we can put on a good fight."
As for qualifying simulations, which have generally been a struggle for Mercedes in 2022, Hamilton believes tyre preparation is even more vital than ever owing to the conditions.
"In FP1 you could do a slow lap, and the tyres would come in and in FP2, we had to be much faster to get the tyres ready," he said.
"It's like you're just rolling the dice, hoping you got it right, sometimes you do, sometimes you don't."
F1 Podcast: How will Red Bull deal with Verstappen ignoring team orders?
RacingNews365.com F1 journalists Dieter Rencken and Michael Butterworth discuss the key issues from the Brazilian Grand Prix, including how Red Bull will deal with Max Verstappen having disobeyed team orders to let Sergio Perez through.