ROSBERG: POINTS GAP COUNTS FOR NOTHING
Early-season Formula 1 championship leader Nico Rosberg has said that his 36-point advantage at the top of the standings counts for nothing, especially with Lewis Hamilton as his team-mate.
The German extended his lead with a third consecutive win in China last weekend but he is sure Hamilton will still provide a stern challenge.
When asked if he was feeling comfortable at the moment, Rosberg replied: “Quite the contrary. My team-mate is Lewis Hamilton, and he has been the benchmark for the last two years.
“The points gap is like nothing, if you consider all the points still up for grabs this year it’s a couple of races’ difference.
“It will always be a tough battle against him. He’s as focused and motivated as ever; he will never give up.
“It’s three races now and they’ve gone really well for me, but it’s the longest season in F1 history with 21 races so that’s 18 to go.
“It would not make sense to make any premature conclusions. Of course I’m happy with the way it’s gone and I’m feeling good and the car’s there, but I don’t want to say more than that.”
Hamilton’s Chinese Grand Prix was compromised before it even started with a grid penalty for a change of gearbox. He then started last after an ERS problem during qualifying.
At the start of the race he was hit by Felipe Nasr’s Sauber as the Brazilian was trying to avoid the colliding Ferraris. This left Hamilton with significant damage for the rest of the race as he finished seventh despite making five stops.
“The car was flexing like crazy, like a four-poster bed today,” said Hamilton. “I just tried to battle through, but every time I stopped I had to come through again, I wasn’t gaining ground, and at the end there weren’t enough tyres.”