• Mercedes

Rosberg: Lauda apologised for outburst

ESPN Staff
September 4, 2014 « McLaren announces £18.8m 2013 profit | Perez moving closer to new Force India deal »
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Nico Rosberg says Niki Lauda has apologised for post-race comments blaming him for the collision with Lewis Hamilton at the Belgian Grand Prix.

Lauda was animated after the race in Spa and was angry with Rosberg making such a risky move on his team-mate so early in the race. Rosberg has since been punished by Mercedes, in what is believed to be a six-figure fine, but he says the most upsetting part of the fallout from Belgium was the criticism he had received from the likes of Lauda post-race.

"The [Belgium] result enabled me to extend my lead in the championship, but when I left the circuit I hadn't really thought about that," Rosberg wrote in his column for the Daily Mail. "I was concerned and distraught about the situation; one thing is for sure: I wasn't happy. I was instead thinking about the criticism - the way Niki Lauda, for example, had been critical about my driving.

"I was also thinking about the team discussions we'd had at the track; the result of our collision meant that one of us didn't finish the race and the other one didn't win, so it had also cost the team a lot of points. Niki has since apologised for what he said and, in the heat of the moment you often say things that you regret - that has happened to all of us."

Rosberg is pleased to move on from the incident and insists he is fully aware of the consequences of another collision with Hamilton.

"Last Friday, Lewis, Paddy Lowe, Toto Wolff and I met for talks at our headquarters in Brackley and it was very intense, but the outcome was a positive one: we have drawn a line under what happened in Belgium - we move forward and we can go racing again.

"It has always been clear from the team that Lewis and I must not collide with one another during a race. If it did happen, and one driver is more responsible than the other, then there will be consequences. I've accepted that."

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