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No evidence of offence by Rosberg

NEWS STORY
24/05/2014

Following an investigation by Race Stewards in Monaco, Nico Rosberg has been cleared of deliberately causing an incident in order to keep his pole position.

Having posted the fastest lap of the session, the German looked set to improve, as did his Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton, until a mistake heading down the hill to Mirabeau. Locking-up and having to take to the escape road from which he then tried reversing to get back on track, the German brought out the yellow flags which effectively ended all hope of anyone bettering his time.

Almost immediately members of the (mainly British) media began suggesting that the incident was deliberate, a claim clearly backed by Hamilton who could hardly contain his obvious anger.

Having failed to congratulate his teammate on his lap, the Briton donned a pair of sunglasses and stood stony faced for the official photo-call.

Asked about the incident at the official press conference, Rosberg said: "Of course I'm sorry for Lewis. I didn't know exactly where he was but once I was reversing I did see he was coming up. Of course that's not great, but that's the way it is."

Asked for his reaction, a stony faced Hamilton said: "I don't have an answer to it."

Pushed a little harder, the Briton replied: "Not really much! The lap was done and that was that."

Asked if he felt he was on a pole winning lap he nodded: "I was on target, yep."

Indeed, speaking to the media later he insisted he was "on a pole lap", adding "I was up by a couple of tenths".

As the murmuring continued, the waters were further muddied when officials announced they were to investigate the incident. Meanwhile, Rosberg insisted that all was above board: "It will be clear in the data," he said. "I just braked a little later and locked up."

A couple of hours later, the stewards, having heard from the driver and his team, and examined data and video footage, announced that they would be taking no further action as they could find "no evidence of any offence related to the turn 5 incident".

Having delayed the release of its post-qualifying press release whilst the stewards carried out their investigation, the German team subsequently took to Twitter to announce that Rosberg had been cleared, suggesting that Hamilton's reaction earlier has caused waves within the team.

"Official Decision from FIA," tweeted the German outfit, "'The Stewards examined video and telemetry data from the team and FIA and could find no evidence of any offence related to the turn 5 incident'".

Later, asked if he would hold 'clear the air' talks with his teammate, Hamilton told the BBC: "I don't know if Senna and Prost sat down. I quite like the way Senna dealt with it, so I'm going to take a page out of his book."

Check out our Saturday gallery, here.

Chris Balfe

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by scf1fan, 24/05/2014 19:32

"I was never a big fan of Senna when he raced; it seemed to me as if it was always "all about Senna" . . . I think Hamilton has been utilizing that part of the Senna playbook for a while now. I would suggest; that with the immense talent he does have, that Lewis doesn't go any further with it. I'm beginning to have a lot more sympathy for Alonzo at this point for holding Hamilton up in the pits . . . (Oh yeah, and I'm sorry that Lewis has had such a deprived childhood. My dad and mother too worked very hard so we didn't have to sleep on the couch; but they did expect my brother, sister and I to spend their money on getting a real education.)"

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2. Posted by 4-Wheel Drifter, 24/05/2014 19:22

"I surely hope Lewis jams Nico on the first lap; I'm pretty sure the Austrian will back off and let him through. After all, if they're both out early, Lewis will keep his championship lead. And with the mercs gone we could have a really exciting race!"

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