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Hamilton admits hard work ahead

Lewis Hamilton has conceded he is uncertain whether he will be able to challenge championship rival Sebastian Vettel for pole position in Monaco.

Hamilton, who was more than one second behind Vettel in Thursday's second practice, is one pole position shy of matching Ayrton Senna's haul of 65 - 30 years after the Brazilian claimed his first of a record six victories at Monaco.

Ahead of today's third practice and qualifying sessions, the Briton admits he faces a tall order to emulate his childhood hero.

"I have no idea whether we will be on the pace for qualifying," Hamilton, 32, said. "I can't explain it because I don't understand it. We didn't have the greatest day.

"Practice one was actually really good and we were the quickest, but then in second practice we just struggled to extract the grip from the tyres and we were sliding around a lot.

"I'm not sure why the tyres weren't working, but the difference between the two sessions was night and day, black and white. We've got some work to do ahead of Saturday, that's for sure."

The famous Monaco race has been, by Hamilton's own admission, somewhat of an Achilles' heel.

He won on only his second visit there back in 2008, but had to wait eight years for his next victory following his triumph over Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo last season.

- PA SPORT

Formula 1