• Austrian GP - FP2

'Hard work' needed overnight for Rosberg

ESPN Staff
June 20, 2014 « Red Bull can build on FP2 form - Vettel | Hamilton: Championship lead makes Rosberg vulnerable »
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Nico Rosberg admits he still has work to do on Friday evening in order to give maximise his chances of beating Lewis Hamilton to pole in Austria.

After topping FP1 Rosberg was off the pace of Hamilton in the afternoon session, with a few agitated messages sent to his pit wall as he struggled to match his Mercedes team-mate in the second and third sectors. But Rosberg says he was just trying to get as much out of his car as possible as there are still areas he is not completely comfortable with.

"I was cool as a cucumber, no tension!" Rosberg said when asked if there was any tension on the radio. "We were just working through everything and trying to optimise everything for tomorrow and there were a few things that weren't ideal. We were just really pushing on and trying to sort everything out. I need to work hard tonight, for sure. I need to work through everything and find some more lap time."

Quite a big issue has been made over which Mercedes driver chooses the order in qualifying after Rosberg's crash in Monaco, but the German admits his only focus is on beating Hamilton on Saturday regardless of when his runs are.

"I don't know who has the choice of going first or second here, we will see in qualifying. The person that does get the choice, it always depends which way round is better. I haven't thought that far yet.

"[Pole is] always important because it's so close between the two of us, and I'm hoping that we will still have the edge on everybody else. That seems to be the case today, so it's going to be between the two of us for pole and then it is very important because race pace is going to be close and getting first into the first corner is a huge advantage."

Though graining was an issue for Rosberg he does not think Mercedes will be alone in that area for the rest of the weekend.

"Graining was a very big issue. My rear tyres were completely grained. I think that's the same for everybody, and it's especially on the [super-]soft tyres, on the hard [soft compound] tyres it's okay."

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