Sebastian Vettel lamented a blunt strategy at the Mexican Grand Prix, which saw Ferrari fail to convert pole position into a race win for the third event in succession.
Charles Leclerc and Vettel inherited an all-red front row after Max Verstappen was booted out of pole position for ignoring yellow flags in qualifying.
However, reactive strategy cost both Scuderia drivers, with Leclerc dropping down the order when he was committed to a two-stopper to cover off Alexander Albon early in the race – a slow second stop also costing the Monegasque.
Vettel was switched to a one-stop strategy after getting under cut by Lewis Hamilton, who managed to eke out 48 laps on hard tyres to win the race, with Vettel unable to bring the fight to his rival in the late stages.
"Surprisingly the hard tyres worked very well. It was a very intense race as I had no break," Vettel said. "I had Valtteri [Bottas] behind me giving me some pressure in the final stint before I could focus on Lewis.
"Lewis was just cruising for most of the second stint up to the point where the pack was arriving, and then I guess he had enough tyres left.
"I'm happy because it was a good race, but here and there maybe with strategy we could have been a bit sharper."
Vettel added to Sky Sports: "I think if you start on the front row you're fighting for victory.
"We kind of did, but not enough. If you're fair I think we didn't have really the speed to force the victory despite the start.
"In hindsight you're smarter. Lewis had nothing to lose so he might as well try."
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