- Monaco GP - Qualifying
It was an honest mistake - Rosberg
Nico Rosberg insists there was nothing deliberate about the mistake which compromised Lewis Hamilton's final qualifying run and therefore put him on pole in Monaco for the second year running.
Rosberg went top of the timing screens in the closing stages of the session but both Mercedes drivers had a flying lap remaining, but he appeared to approach Mirabeau too deep and bailed out down a slip-road, before appearing to start to reverse out when his team-mate approached. The move brought out the yellow flags and meant Hamilton had to lift and eventually abort his flying lap, and the Brit looked far from happy with Rosberg in parc ferme or in the post-qualifying press conference.
Despite the incident Rosberg celebrated emphatically in parc ferme, though it seemed the body language of Hamilton and the questioning from the media on the incident quickly mellowed his mood.
"No, definitely not," Rosberg replied when it was put to him that it was not an ideal way to secure his sixth career pole. "I thought it was over. But of course in the end I am very happy it worked out."
Rosberg also thinks the telemetry from his car will prove his case.
"It's easy for me to show that because it will be clear in the data that nothing's majorly different from the lap before. I just braked that little bit late and deep and locked up and that's it."
Perhaps inevitably, comparisons have started being drawn between Rosberg and his compatriot Michael Schumacher, who infamously parked his Ferrari at Rascasse to prevent Fernando Alonso from making it to pole in 2006. Rosberg apologised to his team-mate for jeopardising the lap but thinks there is nothing more to it.
"I'm sorry for what happened. I knew Lewis would be close. It is not great and yes it is not the way I wanted it to go. But that is the way it is. It does take away some of the pleasure, although I am still very, very happy to be on pole position. It was a mega banker [lap at the start of Q3]."