The Fat Lady is getting ready to sing
NICO Rosberg won the Brazilian Grand Prix on Sunday to end Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton’s run of five consecutive victories and cut his championship lead to 17 points with one race remaining.
Hamilton took the chequered flag 1.4 seconds behind after setting the fastest lap, with Mercedes breaking Formula One records with 11 one-two finishes and 30 podium placings in a season.
“It was a great weekend,” said Rosberg, who started on pole position after lapping fastest in qualifying at Interlagos.
“There’s still all to play for. I just need to keep this going now,” added Rosberg, whose win made up for Texas when he started on pole and lost out to Hamilton.
The final race at Abu Dhabi next weekend will offer double points for the first time, and 50 for the winner, but Hamilton needs only a secondplace finish to wrap up his second title. Hamilton has 334 points to Rosberg’s 317.
The team’s victory equalled the record of 15 in a season held jointly by Ferrari and McLaren, with Rosberg now on five to his British rival’s 10.
The two Mercedes drivers were in a race of their own on a sunny Sao Paulo afternoon. Hamilton’s only scare came on lap 28 as he pushed to gain an advantage when Rosberg pitted, spinning and skidding off at turn four. That cost him seven seconds and a chance to win.
He said later: “I was much quicker up until that point and on that lap I’d gone a second quicker while Nico pitted. I thought I was going to pit at the end of that lap so I used everything of the tyres. The next lap I had nothing left.”
After he pitted, the 2008 champion steadily narrowed the gap until the Silver Arrows were just half a second apart. But Rosberg never allowed him to get close enough to make a move. Local hero Felipe Massa returned to the podium in front of a cheering crowd with third place for Williams, 41 seconds behind despite a stop/go penalty for speeding in the pitlane.
Meanwhile, it’s rumoured that Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso is set to join McLaren, with the former twotime world champion’s move due to be confirmed before the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. - Reuters
Second placed Lewis Hamilton (left) with winner Nico Rosberg on the podium after last Sunday’s Brazilian Grand Prix.