Race Report: Rosberg wins in Brazil…again

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Nico Rosberg have found a way to convert pole positions into wins, unfortunately the discovery has come at the end of the season and after his teammate secured the world driver’s championship. Nonetheless, Rosberg has claimed his second successive Formula 1 win in Brazil and his fifth win of the season.

Rosberg’s win cemented his second place in the driver’s championship which was under some threat from Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel. Nico’s teammate, nursing a tough, sleepless week and wrecked Pagani Zonda managed to finish second in Brazil with Vettel rounding out the podium in third.

The Mercedes duo had a brief battle with Lewis Hamilton telling the team that he simply couldn’t follow or challenge for the pass as his tires were being degraded too much in the slipstream of Rosberg. Hamilton did have a couple of passing attempts and seemed to be very dangerous at the end of the main straight into turn one with late braking but just couldn’t get the pass done nor were the team able to get him an undercut strategy in the pits.

A dominant performance as Nico lapped up to fourth place on the track.

WinWin

A win for Rosberg who repeats his Brazilian win from last year and secured second in the driver’s championship. Of course it’s all a little too late for the main goal of winning the title but interesting to see the change as many wonder why the change in performance now the title has been won. Is Lewis backing off? Is the team focused on Nico now? Who knows.

A win for Nico Hulkenberg who has been bested by his teammate of late and today’s 6th place finish brings him within striking distance of his teammate in the driver’s championship.

Also a win for Kimi Riakkonen who finished 4th and narrowed the gap to Valtteri Bottas to just one point in the final race to secure 4th in the driver’s championship.

FailFail

A fail for Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz who continued a streak of bad luck having DNF’d on lap one having just been towed back to pit lane in the reconnaissance laps.

Pastor Maldonado clashed with Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson garnering a 5-second penalty and this put and end to his incident free run of late. In fact, both Lotus F1 drivers were looking for a possible points finish but missed out on the final laps.

WTHWTH

A WTH moment for Daniel Ricciardo who was running a new engine from Renault and struggled to finish 11th and out of the points while his teammate, Daniil Kvyat finished 7th adding to his points lead over his teammate.

I was intrigued by just how much was being made on NBC Sport’s broadcast over the fact that Mercedes only has one race strategist and this is the reason Lewis Hamilton wasn’t being given the best opportunity to beat Rosberg. Sky Sports F1 must have been discussing it too as Martin Brundle alluded to it on the podium interview and Lewis took the bait. No one questioned the situation when Lewis was winning and Nico had no alternative strategies to beat him. Interesting that.

 

PosDriverCarGap
1Nico RosbergMercedes1h31m09.090s
2Lewis HamiltonMercedes7.700s
3Sebastian VettelFerrari14.200s
4Kimi RaikkonenFerrari47.500s
5Valtteri BottasWilliams/Mercedes1 Lap
6Nico HulkenbergForce India/Mercedes1 Lap
7Daniil KvyatRed Bull/Renault1 Lap
8Felipe MassaWilliams/Mercedes1 Lap
9Romain GrosjeanLotus/Mercedes1 Lap
10Max VerstappenToro Rosso/Renault1 Lap
11Daniel RicciardoRed Bull/Renault1 Lap
12Pastor MaldonadoLotus/Mercedes1 Lap
13Sergio PerezForce India/Mercedes1 Lap
14Felipe NasrSauber/Ferrari1 Lap
15Jenson ButtonMcLaren/Honda1 Lap
16Fernando AlonsoMcLaren/Honda1 Lap
17Marcus EricssonSauber/Ferrari2 Laps
18Will StevensMarussia/Ferrari4 Laps
19Alexander RossiMarussia/Ferrari4 Laps
Carlos SainzToro Rosso/RenaultRetirement

DRIVERS’ STANDINGS:

PosDriverPoints
1Lewis Hamilton363
2Nico Rosberg297
3Sebastian Vettel266
4Valtteri Bottas136
5Kimi Raikkonen135
6Felipe Massa121
7Daniil Kvyat94
8Daniel Ricciardo84
9Sergio Perez68
10Nico Hulkenberg52
11Max Verstappen48
12Romain Grosjean47
13Felipe Nasr27
14Pastor Maldonado26
15Carlos Sainz18
16Jenson Button16
17Fernando Alonso11
18Marcus Ericsson9
19Roberto Merhi0
20Alexander Rossi0
21Will Stevens0

CONSTRUCTORS’ CHAMPIONSHIP:

PosConstructorPoints
1Mercedes660
2Ferrari401
3Williams/Mercedes257
4Red Bull/Renault178
5Force India/Mercedes120
6Lotus/Mercedes73
7Toro Rosso/Renault66
8Sauber/Ferrari36
9McLaren/Honda27
10Marussia/Ferrari0

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Paul KieferJr

What about Massa being called before the stewards due to too hot tire temperatures?

The Captain

Not only has NBC never complained about the team strategist when Nico is behind, the usual narrative when Nico is trying to get by Lewis is ‘the team’s treating you exactly the same, so it’s your job to make the pass on track son’ so yea, that stood out. So why did NBC decide to embarrass themselves like this? Well they do have favorites that they like push. If the earth opened up and swallowed the entire grid at the start the first thing they would say on replay is ‘look how Verstappan flew to the bottom of the pit,… Read more »

Bacon Wrapped Sushi

I respect Aryton’s legacy so much, Top Gear really shined the light on Senna for me as a newer F1 fan at the time. I also watched the Senna documentary, which was excellent, but all of this Lewis = Senna nonsense is getting old. Fast.

I’m tired of the narrative. We get it that Lewis adores Senna, which is fine and good. Can we focus on the racing now? Can we start talking about DRS and the problems with the aero packages which are once again destroying potentially awesome racing?

Herb Dressing

The BS detector has been going off since Hamilton won the world championship. Looks like another manufactured result to me.

Schmorbraten

Yeah Rosberg can do it, again and again – when it doesn’t count …

runnah

I literally fell asleep for the middle part of this race. Very dull.

228929292AABBB

I did as well.

adaptable1

Mad Max had some really great passes this race. I wonder how he would do in a better car. Interesting on the podium interview how Lewis said that it was impossible to pass at Interlagos. Max seemed to keep grip and stability past the DRS zone and made some wonderful passes in and around the Senna Esses. Is there something about the Mercedes chassis that didn’t allow Lewis to do the same on that close attempt at Nico on lap 17? Surely a bit of late breaking could have given Lewis an edge there. Maybe Max is more confident on… Read more »

228929292AABBB

I am not a Verstappen fan but he is undeniably impressive. That mid-turn, outside of turn car control on him!

Andreas Möller

Watched the race live, and will re-watch it again in a few hours, while I’m on a four-hour boat trip back to mainland Sweden. But I doubt my assessment will change much with the second viewing – it wasn’t the most exciting race. Plenty of good passing action further down the field, though, with Max Verstappen’s gutsy moves being the highlight. Yes, I too was frustrated that Lewis wasn’t allowed to try alternate strategies. But at least for me it isn’t a Lewis thing – I’ve been saying for a couple of years now, that while Mercedes boasts about letting… Read more »

228929292AABBB

Here’s an alternative strategy for Lewis – why don’t you pass him. The whole ‘I was quicker but it’s impossible to overtake here’ thing on the podium didn’t move me after watching Verstappen’s Renault powered car whiz by Merc engined rigs. And let’s not forget ‘my floor is damaged!’ after a lockup. These are, in my opinion, just a bunch excuses from a driver who needs little emotional crutches to prop himself up. Lewis Hamilton had really seemed to mature with this move to Mercedes but his behavior in (and outside of) the last few races, when he has every… Read more »

Andreas Möller

I’d be happy with that as a strategy too, although I suspect it is a fair bit harder to overtake a Mercedes – even with another Mercedes – than some of the other battles we saw further down the field. Those cars are not as finely tuned aero-wise, and therefore probably not as sensitive to running close behind other cars. Or – putting it another way – they at least don’t seem to lose as much, probably because they had less performance to begin with. Personally, I don’t care for the excuses either. I just feel that the Mercedes way… Read more »

228929292AABBB

I agree, although once you raise the philosophical question of what, really, is racing I would suggest that for many people changing one car’s tires at a different moment than changing another car’s tires fails to rise to the definition of racing. If the question is how fast they can go round the track alone, we might as well have qualifying and hand out the trophies. It doesn’t mean I’m unsympathetic to Lewis entirely, maybe the problem is in the car design formula or etc. Still and all though I just didn’t see that Hamilton even was faster but unable… Read more »

dude

I don’t think it was too bad of a race, definitely more 3.5 than 3 rating. It’s not too often to see a good fight between Lewis and Rosberg, unfortunately Mercedes management denied the fans of seeing some possible overtakes. Max Verstappen had some amazing overtakes and it was interesting seeing the tires strategies played out.

228929292AABBB

2.0

228929292AABBB

I saw the Maldonado thing as pretty close to a racing incident, there was plenty of track outside Ericsson. I guess it’s his own fault, but Maldonado seems to get a lot more mention for one minor incident than he did for the last five or six solid races. Kimi Raikkonen enjoys the inverse effect. Kimi Raikkonen manages to finish one race, albeit way behind his teammate. Okay I guess that’s good, assuming the bar is set as low as it is, but I’d throw a thumbs up to Serious Dan Kvyat who really may finish the season in front… Read more »

Bacon Wrapped Sushi

At this rate if Kimi is at Ferrari in 2017 I will be extremely surprised.

54654654815994CCDDD

Kimi was on an alternate strategy with an old PU. Of course, that matters little when it’s contrary to your highly transparent agenda of Kimi-bashing. He is a good number 2 for Vettel; that’s what Ferrari wants.

228929292AABBB

I mean fair enough, I have been picking on him. But not entirely without reason I don’t think. There are four cars capable of finishing on the lead lap and he finishes fourth in one of them, and that’s a great race because he finished at all? I’m just not sure who else is held to that standard. And it honestly sort of does get under my skin to see this guy (who I’ve gotten a great kick out of over the years, very glad he was involved in F1) be at this point where he sort of doesn’t like… Read more »

Bacon Wrapped Sushi

Todd I feel you are a bit generous this time around. I’m giving this race 2.0 stars out of 5. Maybe even 1.75. This race was boring and dull. It highlights the problems with DRS and the aero packages even more now that we don’t have the title fight to talk about. How can people attack each other on a tough to overtake track if you can’t get near the guy without having to worry about the destruction of your tires? Lewis should get donkey of the race just for his: “You can’t overtake here.” comment on the podium. It… Read more »

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Race Report: Rosberg wins in Brazil...againA relatively processional affair but there were some interesting battles on track although the finishing positions were slightly deceiving as drives from Max Verstappen and Romain Grosjean were good but didn't materialize into good results. The muted podium ceremony didn't add to teh excitement but can be understood given the events around the world.
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