• Abu Dhabi Grand Prix - Qualifying

Rosberg struggles with tyre temperature

ESPNF1 Staff
November 12, 2011 « Perfect race will yield podium - Alonso | Hamilton issues Vettel with turn one ultimatum »
Nico Rosberg was unable to get his soft tyres up to temperature in Q3 due to traffic © Sutton Images

Nico Rosberg said that he struggled to get heat in to his tyres during the final part of qualifying for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, leaving him in seventh place on the grid.

Rosberg looked close to Felipe Massa's pace throughout FP3 and after doing an early lap on medium tyres in Q3 he was unable to beat the Ferrari on his flying lap on soft tyres. Rosberg said that he had encountered traffic on his out-lap, and that with the lower track temperatures under the floodlights he was unable to get heat in to his tyres for his one and only run.

"We didn't quite get the maximum from our qualifying session today which was a shame," Rosberg said. "The track temperatures dropped during the session and it became more difficult to get the tyres working. On my second run in Q3, I had too much traffic in front of me to warm the tyres up sufficiently and that hurt me on the quick lap, otherwise I think we could have been further ahead. However I'm on the good side of the grid and it should be a fun race tomorrow."

Despite Rosberg's apparent disappointment, Mercedes head of motorsport Norbert Haug said the aim was to save tyres for the race and that he was pleased with the result.

"The best possible job from our team, Nico and Michael today," Haug said. "We have again been mindful of our strategy in order to save tyres for the race tomorrow, and we hope this approach will be to our benefit as has been the case in recent races."