Lewis Hamilton: I've lost half a second in F1 to Nico Rosberg

Lewis Hamilton believes he will need to find half a second of pace this winter if he is to challenge Nico Rosberg at the beginning of the 2016 Formula 1 season

Since the Singapore Grand Prix, a race where Mercedes struggled with its car and for pace all weekend, Hamilton has not felt comfortable behind the wheel.

After outscoring Rosberg 12-1 in qualifying over the first 13 races, Hamilton has since been second best to the polesitting German in the subsequent six.

How Hamilton lost his edge

Although Hamilton won in Japan, Russia and the United States after Singapore, Rosberg won the final three races of the year.

"I could pinpoint it [the problem], but I'm not going to say what it is. Let's just say the set up has changed a lot," Hamilton told Autosport.

"I know my race pace has generally been very good, but overall I reckon I've lost half a second, so I have to figure out how I get the car back to that area in which I'm able to exploit it more.

"Throughout the beginning of the season, and up until Singapore, the car was phenomenal, and I felt comfortable.

"It was really nicely set up, and it was really beneath me.

"But the team felt they had to make some changes, and after that it has not really been the same.

"It wasn't in the sweet spot, and it has maybe suited Nico's driving style a little bit more."

In looking to rectify the matter over the winter, Hamilton added: "I don't need to hope for things to change. I'll make it work.

"In these cars you have all these different tools and you can choose certain ones, but you don't always have the time to choose the right ones.

"Sometimes you get it right, sometimes you don't."

Hamilton plans to spend plenty of time working with Mercedes in a bid to get to the bottom of the problem.

"Over the next couple of weeks, and then next year I'll be there quite a bit," said Hamilton with regard to visiting the Mercedes facility in Brackley.

"But you still have to have a break, to step away from it because you think about it all year long.

"It's not about the number of days in the factory, it's about understanding the data and how you work and communicate with the engineers."

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