Nico Rosberg keeps fourth in Austrian GP despite penalty for Lewis Hamilton crash
Rosberg handed 10s penalty and two penalty points after collision with Hamilton; Stewards' decision doesn't affect race result
By Matt Morlidge
Last Updated: 03/07/16 10:16pm
Nico Rosberg has kept fourth place at the Austrian GP despite being handed a 10-second penalty for causing a collision with Lewis Hamilton.
The Spielberg stewards ruled he had forced his Mercedes team-mate off the track while fighting to keep hold of the lead on the final lap.
Rosberg was also given a reprimand for continuing with a damaged car, but the stewards' time penalty doesn't affect the race result as he was 14 seconds ahead of Daniel Ricciardo in fifth place when his Mercedes limped over the line.
But speaking in a Facebook video update after the verdict had been handed down, Rosberg continued to plead his innocence.
"They gave me the blame, which sucks," he said. "I respect that, but I am of a different opinion."
Race winner Hamilton was also called to see the stewards and both drivers blamed each other for the crash.
Rosberg told Sky F1 immediately after the race that he was "very surprised that Lewis turned in and that caused a collision".
But Hamilton said: "I left tons of room for him to make the corner and I got to the white line and I began to turn and boom, big hit. I'm pretty sure he hit me, rather than the other way."
Mercedes boss Toto Wolff branded the collision "brainless" and admitted team orders were "on the table" after the title rivals' second crash in five grands prix.
"Cars colliding seems a deja-vu," he told Sky F1. "We are looking like a bunch of idiots and it's disrespectful to 1500 people who work their nuts off to prepare the cars and this is why it needs to end."
Mercedes revealed Rosberg, who remains 11 points ahead of Hamilton in the title race, had brake issues - although the German didn't seem to attempt to turn into the second corner at the Red Bull Ring as his team-mate attacked around the outside.
"If he's got brake problems why on earth wasn't he turning in there?" said Sky F1's Martin Brundle. "Nico paid the price for what I believe was his fault.
"Lewis was on the racing line and couldn't have gone any further left. He was up against the white line, presumably hoping to cut back underneath Nico from a more acute angle. I think Nico will look at that incident and realise his attempt to intimidate Hamilton and run him wide was a critical error
Lewis wins epic Austrian GP
Lewis Hamilton clashed with Nico Rosberg on the last lap on the way to victory in Spielberg.
Wolff's threat of team orders has been delivered ahead of three more races this month, starting with the British Grand Prix next weekend, but Brundle suggested the latest Mercedes controversy is ultimately good for the sport and the world champions.
"They'll be dominating the media tomorrow and they won the race," he added. "Two bulls in one field, two great racing drivers, the fastest car on the grid - they're going to run into each other from time to time."
The stewards' verdict in full:
Reprimand for "The driver continued on the track with a damaged car spreading debris and with the front wing detached" but recognition of extenuating circumstances, that he slowed down and tried to mitigate risk to other drivers and cars.
10s penalty for causing a collision with car 44 in Turn 2. "Having taken note of the extensive evidence given by both drivers and the video and telemetry data, it was apparent that Car 44 (HAM) was in front of Car 6 (ROS) - i.e. more than fully alongside - and that the driver of Car 44 could have clearly made the turn (T2) on the track, if not for the resultant collision. Car 6 did not allow Car 44 "racing room" and hence the driver of Car 6 was responsible for the collision."
Don't miss the F1 Report: Austrian GP review on Sky Sports F1 at 8.30pm on Wednesday as Stoffel Vandoorne and Jaime Alguersuari join Marc Priestley in the studio.