Nov.26 (GMM/Inautonews.com) Nico Rosberg on Thursday played down teammate Lewis Hamilton’s claim that the balance of power at Mercedes changed for technical reasons.
World champion Hamilton, who was beaten by Rosberg at the last two races consecutively, says the team made a change to the car in response to the mysterious performance slump of Singapore.
“But the car had been fantastic all year, so that doesn’t really completely make sense to me,” Hamilton told the BBC.
“The car balance has changed and it has not been as comfortable, while Nico seems to be more comfortable with it,” he added.
When asked about Hamilton’s comments, German Rosberg said in Abu Dhabi: “I don’t know what he’s referring to.
“I think the feeling in the car is the same. We were always quite close together, the pendulum has simply swung in the other direction,” he is quoted by Speed Week.
However, some think the change is due to Pirelli’s new higher tyre pressure instructions, or some other technical detail.
“I think this is all reading tea-leaves,” Rosberg insisted. “Clearly a lot of work has gone into it but there’s no particular reason why I am currently ahead.
“The right question is not why I’m faster now, but why I was not faster before,” he added.
Meanwhile, although he is charging for a hat-trick of victories to round out the season this weekend, Rosberg also admitted he will suffer a horse power deficit.
Reports have suggested the German will use a single engine throughout the Abu Dhabi weekend, after a water leak was discovered in his Brazil unit following his win at Interlagos.
Rosberg said the troubles actually date back to Monza, where he also ran into engine issues.
“This has played quite a big role in the later races, and especially in Abu Dhabi which is an engine track,” he said.
“It means I have had basically three engines for the whole season. Now we need to think about how much practice I need to do to find a good rhythm and setup without compromising the power even more,” Rosberg added.
Asked how much the disadvantage is in horse power terms, he answered: “I cannot say how much it is, but it is something.”