"I think overall our vehicle is working and there's nothing wrong with it - but I think it's just about placing it in the right window and then being able to extract the performance that the auto has, which I think Charles was able to show in Bahrain more than myself". It's not ideal for the fastest possible lap. Ferrari were gaining half a second on Mercedes on the start-finish straight alone.
And the beginning was all about whether Charles LeClerc would repeat his feat at Bahrain and take pole.
However, in China, which has an ultra-long back straight, Mercedes locked out the front row in qualifying and defeated Ferrari with relative ease in the race.
"We knew we just about had the gap to stack them properly and gave the commitment to Valtteri that we wouldn't lose him any time, and it was really impressive how the guys did it".
Sebastian Vettel believes Ferrari is slowly gathering an understanding of how its 2019 auto behaves but has urged the team to "unlock" its full potential.
'They were trying to put on some more rear wing but they didn't have the bigger rear wing they needed, ' explains Rosberg, who was once offered a place at Imperial College London to study aerodynamics.
Rosberg added: "They need to produce that but also just putting on rear wing is not an efficient way because it's just a 1:1 "increase downforce, increase drag". That's not the way to go.
'The way to go is to take it from other places on the vehicle, like front wings, endplates. "You know you're going to lose time being the auto behind, but it was due to the start that I was in that position". But that's a lot of work. During the race, Leclerc was ordered to let Vettel past which has caused much controversy.
Leclerc's race ended up severely compromised in China, with the early team order and subsequent decision to extend his first stint leading to him dropping behind Max Verstappen as well. In the words of Christian Horner, whose Red Bull team profited, "Leclerc got hung out to dry". But the Mercedes seems better suited to the calendar as a whole and, after three rounds, they've scored three one-two finishes and nearly twice as many points as the reds.
Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff explained the logic behind the double-stack choice.
The last team to start a season with three successive one-twos was Williams, with Nigel Mansell and Riccardo Patrese, in 1992.
"Mattia finds himself having to manage what is definitely a new situation for Ferrari, in the shape of two drivers fighting at a very high level", wrote Brawn in his usual post-race debrief. For Kubica, his comeback from serious injury is turning into a nightmare.
"Nevertheless, when you start doing these things it becomes very complicated and you start a precedent and open a can of worms".