Lewis Hamilton was disappointed Mercedes did not pit him earlier at the Singapore Grand Prix, where he felt "easily" capable of winning.
The defending champion started from second, having been stunned by Charles Leclerc on Saturday, but Mercedes paid the price for leaving Hamilton out in front after his rivals had pitted.
It appeared to be attempting to slow Sebastian Vettel and Leclerc in a midfield battle, yet Hamilton was instead left in fourth, losing positions to both Ferrari drivers, as well as Max Verstappen.
Hamilton wanted to take a risk and head into the pits earlier and acknowledged his finish was "painful".
"I knew that we should have undercut. I kind of knew it this morning in the brief," he told Sky Sports. "I thought we should take the risk but they didn't.
"We win and lose together as a team, so we'll take this on our chin. It's painful for us because we clearly, easily could have won today."
Ferrari has now won three races on the bounce, its best run since 2008 as Mercedes go through its longest streak without a victory in the hybrid era.
Hamilton wants to see his team establish itself once more as the best on the grid.
"It feels like they're hungrier at the moment, so we've got to step it up," he said. "We've got the ability, we've got the team - we're still the best team.
"We've just got to stop dragging our feet and get on. We'll debrief, we'll re-huddle, get back in the scrum and come fight in the next race."