Nico not happy un­til he bat­tles Lewis and wins

Ros­berg rel­ish­ing the chance to test him­self against Hamil­ton

7 Days in Dubai - - SPORT -

Nico Ros­berg says he can­not fully en­joy win­ning races un­til he has come out vic­to­ri­ous hav­ing had a wheel-to-wheel bat­tle with Mercedes team­mate Lewis Hamil­ton.

Af­ter se­cur­ing his fourth straight vic­tory of the sea­son in Rus­sia - and sev­enth con­sec­u­tive win dat­ing back to last sea­son - Ros­berg holds a 43-point ad­van­tage over reign­ing world cham­pion Hamil­ton.

But even the Ger­man ad­mits that he can­not fully ap­pre­ci­ate his suc­cess when Hamil­ton has been ham­pered with car prob­lems. “I can’t say I miss it [fight­ing with Hamil­ton] be­cause it is awe­some to win races and in the end it doesn’t mat­ter how,” Ros­berg told Sky Sports. “Win­ning is great and what I’m here for. But the ec­static feel­ing isn’t there, it’s there when I win a bat­tle with Lewis, that’s what gives the ul­ti­mate thrill. “A straight fight with Lewis is what I am here for be­cause he’s the bench­mark. “It’s al­ways go­ing to be a tough bat­tle against him be­cause he’s as mo­ti­vated and as quick as ever.”

Mean­while, Hamil­ton has been quick to de­fend his Mercedes me­chan­ics but ad­mit­ted he has no clue as to why some per­son­nel were moved from his side of the garage to Ros­berg’s.

“From my side of the garage the me­chan­ics are hav­ing a hard time,” said Hamil­ton. “But I have ab­so­lutely ev­ery bit of con­fi­dence and faith in them.

“The ma­jor­ity were on Nico’s car last year and Nico’s guys were with me for the last three years since I joined. The team all of a sud­den swapped for no ap­par­ent rea­son.”

The next F1 grand prix takes place in Spain on May 15 where last year Ros­berg beat Hamil­ton in a Mercedes one-two.

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