Nico Rosberg's take on Lewis Hamilton vs Max Verstappen, Formula 1's battle of the generations
Watch this weekend's Hungarian GP live only on Sky Sports F1, with Sunday's race at 2pm; Nico Rosberg: "It's this generational battle; the best guy of the last generation, or even at the moment, and the best guy of the next generation"
Last Updated: 27/07/21 11:03am
Sky F1's Nico Rosberg believes the "generational battle" for Formula 1's world title between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton will continue to spark all the way through the season with further flashpoints inevitable.
Hamilton and Verstappen's title rivalry will resume at this weekend's Hungarian Grand Prix, two weeks after their acrimonious collision at Silverstone which saw Verstappen crash out and Hamilton eventually take a win which cut his Red Bull rival's championship lead to just eight points.
Rosberg, who will again be part of the Sky Sports F1 team in Budapest, said he cannot wait for the next instalment.
"First and foremost, the most important is health so it was important to see Max walk out, to have his checks in hospital and everything to be ok," said Rosberg in conversation with Craig Slater.
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"Then after that, it was just an amazing battle. As a pundit for Sky Sports and as a fan of the sport, it's so awesome. I'm personally excited now for the next race. How is the dynamic going to play out?
"Even just the next press conference on Thursday - I wish F1 put them both in there to have them next to each other! It's so cool."
Rosberg's view on the Silverstone collision
Stewards found Hamilton to have been 'predominantly at fault' in the accident on the opening lap at Copse corner and so handed him a 10-second time penalty.
But there was little consensus to be found elsewhere.
Red Bull thought Hamilton was completely in the wrong and that the penalty was too lenient, whereas Mercedes were adamant their driver had followed overtaking guidelines and the penalty was harsh. Others, some including rival drivers, viewed it as a racing incident with neither title protagonist clearly more to blame than the other.
Rosberg was among those who felt it was too difficult to call either way.
"It's not a 100 per cent obvious one," said the 2016 world champion of the collision.
"It was a close-fought battle throughout all the corners after the start. Then there it was just a little bit over the edge and they touched.
"That's why there are different opinions and I like to call it a racing incident as well.
"Of course, you can put a little bit more blame on one or the other, but in the end it's the battle of the generations. Both will not leave the other even a centimetre.
"We've seen that already in previous races, it's not the first time they had contact. They already had contact in Imola, turn one, and we're going to see more I'm sure.
"It's this generational battle; the best guy of the last generation, or even at the moment, and the best guy of the next generation. It's really reminiscent of Senna-Schumacher, Schumacher-Alonso, and Alonso-Vettel maybe."
What happens next in Hungary?
By going on to win the grand prix, Hamilton raced back on to Verstappen's tail in the championship (the points gap between them is the equivalent of a single sixth-place finish) heading to Hungary and the final race before F1's three-week summer break.
In sharp contrast to Silverstone, the Hungaroring is a slower and sinuous circuit that might could potentially suit a Red Bull car that dominated Monaco in May.
However, Hamilton's personal record at the Hungaroring is without equal and the world champion is chasing a record-breaking ninth victory at a single venue this weekend.
"Before Austria it was Mercedes that had the stronger package. After Austria it was suddenly Red Bull that had a much stronger package. Now Mercedes might be back so, even there, in that dynamic, who knows?" added Rosberg.
"Hungary is a very different track again, it's more like Monaco style so you'd probably put Red Bull ahead there.
"But it's a Lewis track. It's one of Lewis' best tracks ever. Hungary, Montreal, maybe Silverstone, I would put right up there. In Hungary Lewis is unbelievably fast so, wow, I mean who knows?"