Ferrari failed in bid to close on Mercedes - Vettel

Sebastian Vettel acknowledged "we failed" after Ferrari again failed to trouble Mercedes as Lewis Hamilton reigned in France.

Mercedes have won every Formula One race so far this season and the stunning run continued with Hamilton leading a one-two with Valtteri Bottas at the French Grand Prix.

Ferrari's Charles Leclerc at least held onto third, but Vettel had been hoping the Scuderia would make up some ground on their rivals.

Having finished fifth, he admitted that did not pan out.

"We wanted to close the gap to Mercedes and we did not, so, in that sense, we have to be honest [and say] we failed," Vettel said.

"But I think we tried everything we could. And Charles' podium is at least a little satisfaction.

"Like I said, though, the big goal was to come here and eliminate the difference to them. Unfortunately, our parts did not work as we expected."

Team principal Mattia Binotto was slightly more optimistic and added: "In terms of performance, we are not yet where we want to be.

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Formula One F1 - French Grand Prix - Circuit Paul Ricard, Le Castellet, France - June 23, 2019 Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton celebrates winning the race REUTERS/Vincent Kessler
Formula One F1 - French Grand Prix - Circuit Paul Ricard, Le Castellet, France - June 22, 2019 Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton during the race REUTERS/Vincent Kessler
Formula One F1 - French Grand Prix - Circuit Paul Ricard, Le Castellet, France - June 23, 2019 Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton celebrates with a trophy on the podium after winning the race REUTERS/Vincent Kessler
Formula One F1 - French Grand Prix - Circuit Paul Ricard, Le Castellet, France - June 23, 2019 Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton celebrates with sparkling wine on the podium after winning the race alongside second placed Mercedes' Valtteri Bottas and third placed Ferrari's Charles Leclerc REUTERS/Vincent Kessler
Ferrari's German driver Sebastian Vettel stops in the pits during the Formula One Grand Prix de France at the Circuit Paul Ricard in Le Castellet, France June 23, 2019. Gerard Julien/Pool via REUTERS
Formula One F1 - French Grand Prix - Circuit Paul Ricard, Le Castellet, France - June 23, 2019 Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton celebrates winning the race REUTERS/Jean-Paul Pelissier
Formula One F1 - French Grand Prix - Circuit Paul Ricard, Le Castellet, France - June 23, 2019 Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton celebrates winning the race REUTERS/Jean-Paul Pelissier
Formula One F1 - French Grand Prix - Circuit Paul Ricard, Le Castellet, France - June 23, 2019 Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton celebrates winning the race REUTERS/Jean-Paul Pelissier
Formula One F1 - French Grand Prix - Circuit Paul Ricard, Le Castellet, France - June 23, 2019 Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel during the race REUTERS/Jean-Paul Pelissier
Formula One F1 - French Grand Prix - Circuit Paul Ricard, Le Castellet, France - June 23, 2019 Ferrari's Charles Leclerc during the race REUTERS/Jean-Paul Pelissier
Formula One F1 - French Grand Prix - Circuit Paul Ricard, Le Castellet, France - June 23, 2019 Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton after the start of the race REUTERS/Jean-Paul Pelissier
Formula One F1 - French Grand Prix - Circuit Paul Ricard, Le Castellet, France - June 22, 2019 Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton after the start of the race REUTERS/Jean-Paul Pelissier
Formula One F1 - French Grand Prix - Circuit Paul Ricard, Le Castellet, France - June 22, 2019 Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton during the race REUTERS/Vincent Kessler
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"We knew this circuit would be tough for us and to finish with Charles right behind Bottas is encouraging.

"The developments we have introduced since the Spanish Grand Prix have allowed us to close the gap and we have shown that we are on the right path.

"Some of these updates have proved to be very useful, others unfortunately less so, but we know that we have potential to improve significantly.

"At this point, we are confident, aware that there is still a lot to do, but that we have the ability to develop the car and to be competitive on all tracks."

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