Nico Rosberg rues late brake failure in Bahrain after slip to third
German loses second place to Raikkonen with just two laps left
By Pete Gill
Last Updated: 19/04/15 9:49pm
Nico Rosberg believes he would have held on for second place in the Bahrain GP but for a late brake failure on his Mercedes.
After overtaking Sebastian Vettel's Ferrari on three separate occasions during the race, Rosberg was undone with the chequered flag almost in sight when he ran wide at the first corner, allowing Kimi Raikkonen through to snatch second place.
If the result was fully deserved from Raikkonen’s perspective after an outstanding drive from the Finn, it was a harsh conclusion for Rosberg after a spirted and gutsy display.
"To lose the second place just feels a bit unnecessary somehow,” a forlorn Rosberg told Sky Sports F1. "Just two laps from the end I got a bit of a brake problem and the pedal went straight down, there was no resistance anymore. I still had brakes, but the pedal just went down so I just went straight on and that was disappointing then.”
Asked if he believed he could have rebuffed Raikkonen’s rapid advances in the closing stages, Rosberg replied: “Yeah, I think so because his tyres were also quite destroyed by that point so I could have held him behind for sure.”
Nevertheless, even if the result did not match the performance, Rosberg has taken heart from a display that was in stark contrast to his subdued outings through the first three events of 2015.
“It was an enjoyable race in the beginning, to pass those red cars like that gave me a particular pleasure and then chasing down Lewis, but we are similar on pace so there was nothing I could do. I tried my best, but it wasn’t possible,” added Rosberg.
“I just really liked the car today, straight away after the start I told the guys ‘wow, this feels good’ so I knew I could really put on an attack and I went for it. I had to of course because I was fourth and had to get past those red cars to chase down Lewis. That was the goal.”
Following Hamilton's victory, his ninth in the last 11 events, Rosberg now trails his team-mate by 27 points in the Drivers' World Championship.
Catch the F1 Midweek Report on Wednesday April 22 at 8:30pm on Sky Sports F1. Marc Priestley and Mark Gillan join Natalie Pinkham to analyse the Bahrain Grand Prix.