SPIELBERG, Austria -- Lewis Hamilton has called on his Mercedes team to improve its race strategy after throwing away a shot at an "easy win" at the Austrian Grand Prix.
Although a loss of fuel pressure ultimately cost Hamilton a points finish at the Red Bull Ring -- as well as his championship lead to Sebastian Vettel -- his chances of victory slipped away on lap 14 when the Mercedes pit wall failed to take advantage of an opportunity to pit under a Virtual Safety Car.
Hamilton lost the lead of the Australian Grand Prix under due to a strategy miscalculation in March and the Mercedes pit wall also made a questionable call at the Chinese Grand Prix in April that saw Hamilton pass up an opportunity to mimic Daniel Ricciardo's race-winning strategy.
When asked if things needed to change at his team, Hamilton said: "I'm not going to lie, all areas we are going to have to work on. The car has been great all weekend -- we were the quickest -- but to have two different faults on each car, which is very unusual, we really can't throw away points.
"We've got to find a bulletproof method to move forward for strategy. If our car was still going it was an easy win for us. We were comfortably ahead but we will work on it and will try to re-evaluate to come back stronger for the next race."
But Hamilton said he has full confidence that his team will learn from the double DNF in Austria.
"Everyone in the team is really feeling the pain today but I think you just have to look at it, we've had such great reliability for so many years and as painful as it is, and we are perfectionists, we really have to take the rough with the smooth. This is definitely the worst weekend for us I can remember for a long, long time. I have every confidence in my team that we'll be able to bounce back."
Mercedes head strategist James Vowles admitted to the error over the team radio and Hamilton said he went to console Vowles after his retirement.
"I saw him in the garage, we had a hug. As always, he was brutally honest with himself and with everyone and we could have all done a better job this weekend. It's very rare and incredibly unusual for us to have these two DNFs in one weekend. A real shame because we had a great car and were looking very strong, but we will live to fight another day."