Belfast Telegraph

Nico Rosberg 'will adapt' to team strategy

By Ian Parkes

Nico Rosberg concedes he has learned "various things" following the team orders row that unfolded in Hungary, but refused to elaborate on whether clear-the-air talks were resolved to his liking.

Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff has implemented a new code of conduct with regard to team orders for drivers Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton.

Wolff was forced to act following events that unfolded during the Hungarian Grand Prix at the end of last month when Hamilton was surprisingly told to allow Rosberg through.

Running third and fourth at the time, and with 20 laps of the race remaining, the differing strategies of the duo forced the pit wall crew at Mercedes into what non-executive chairman Niki Lauda later described as "a panic".

Starting from pole position, early crashes and safety car periods had resulted in Mercedes opting for an aggressive three-stop plan with Rosberg in a bid to ensure he took the chequered flag.

Starting from the pit lane and last on the track at the end of lap one, those same crashes and safety cars played its part in propelling Hamilton into a fight for a podium, potentially even the win, and so two stops was preferred.

Hamilton, however, declined to let Rosberg past, citing the fact the German was never close enough to make an overtaking manoeuvre.

The duo eventually finished third and fourth in the race, allowing Hamilton to close the gap on a disgruntled Rosberg in the drivers' standings to 11 points heading into the second half of the season that starts on Sunday in Belgium.

Wolff maintains the drivers will continue to be free to race over the closing eight grands prix, but with a new directive should circumstances arise.

Asked for his thoughts on the situation, Rosberg said: "I gather it was a bit of a mess in the media after Hungary, so it's best I don't add too much, add too many details.

"I learned various things from that race which I will adapt for the future."

Belfast Telegraph


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