Rosberg: Safety Car deployment was “wrong”

2014 Hungarian Grand Prix

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Nico Rosberg questioned the manner in which the Safety Car was used during the Hungarian Grand Prix, saying he was “very disappointed” on the consequences it had for his race.

Rosberg was leading by ten second when the Safety Car was sent out following Marcus Ericsson’s crash at turn four.

In a video he posted on social media on Monday Rosberg said the Safety Car “didn’t even come out at the wrong time, but the way it came out was just wrong, I think, from the race officials.”

“They sent it out at the wrong time because I got stuck behind it, although normally you’re supposed to do this average speed sort of slow lap, but I got stuck behind it right away,” he explained.

“And it was so slow that all the guys who managed to pit first, they got by me then. That’s not supposed to be the case so that was the main problem.”

Rosberg lost more time than usual behind the Safety Car because the Medical Car was also sent out, something which only happens in rare cases. Rosberg arrived at turn one just as the Safety Car was letting the slower Medical Car past.

After the Safety Car came Rosberg said he had a “brake problem – so I lost a place or two“.

That eventually allowed Lewis Hamilton to jump ahead of him through the pit stops, and Rosberg was unhappy his team mate refused to follow Mercedes’ orders to let him past.

“Then Lewis didn’t let me by, although he was ordered to do so, that’s obviously not good,” said Rosberg. “We need to discuss that internally.”

However Rosberg had no complaints about Hamilton’s defensive move at turn two on the final lap of the race – though he admitted his inability to pass his team mate was “the thing I’m most annoyed about”.

“I had a little opportunity and just so close, I didn’t manage to use it. It was just like 30 centimetres missing or something.

“What he did was OK, the way he defended, the guy on the inside it’s his corner, the guy on the outside needs to make it far enough in front that the other guy can’t push him out and I didn’t manage to do that. So that’s what annoys me most.”

2014 Hungarian Grand Prix

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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119 comments on “Rosberg: Safety Car deployment was “wrong””

  1. Whine, whine, whine, whine. If they’d deployed the safety car in the last race…as they should have…Lewis would have beaten you then too.

    1. Not defending rosberg, he just had his turn of some bad luck for once. But lewis fans really shouldnt complain when other drivers whine.

      1. @toxbox Very true. It’s hypocritical to moan about one driver complaining whilst saying “he’s just speaking his mind” when their favourite driver complains.

        Honestly, I don’t mind either driver’s complaints (or most complaints, unless they’re clearly irrational), because it gives a little insight to the driver’s perception of a situation or incident.
        I’d rather that than the driver not say anything at all.

        1. +1 Im tired of hearing so much moaning about drivers giving their opinions. drivers used to be so much more vocal and people appreciated it. id don’t understand why this has changed.

      2. He whine all he wants. And just as people do with Hamilton, they can point out that he’s whining.

        1. It does seem strange that the guy leading the race after
          a great start and first few laps is then penalised for someone
          else’s mistake. I thought they could pit for tyres and then re-join
          in the same order after one sc car lap. I was wrong.

          1. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
            28th July 2014, 14:53

            +100 If Lewis wasn’t penalized for others’ mistakes, there’d be no need for team orders – Nico would be miles behind in the Championship…

          2. Well, that’s how it works. It’s has been like this for years. The guy well up in the front always is penalized with SAFETY cars. Others lost races like this in the past in the same way.

            It didn’t started yesterday with Rosberg.

      3. Erik, Lewis has every right to “whine” this season, considering every other race some part or other of his car is failing or exploding, whole Nico whistles off into the sunset problem free. Considering all the failures, it’s a minor miracle Lewis only trails in the championship by 11 points.

    2. It’s only so obvious now, Charlie Whiting is shifting his allegiance back and forth between Mercedes drivers depending on who has sent the bigger check before each race. Yeah, that’s it. [/sarcasm]

    3. Yes, that is exactly right.

    4. I am wondering, did anybody else notice Rosberg overtook Magnussen behind the safety car? The incident was not shown on the TV footage but when Rosberg came out after his fist pit stop to begin lap 10, he was behind Magnusen in P5. By the start of lap 11, Rosberg was already in P4. Did Magnussen run wide or something?

      But I find it interesting that Rosberg claims his brake issue casued him the three places he lost at the restart after the safety car. Could be the overtake by Magnussen can be explained that way as it was in the heavy breaking point of turn one. However, I still think the Intermidiates had better grip exiting that corner and that’s how Magnussen managed to beat him. However, losing places to Vergne and Alonso cannot be explained by his brake balance as it came after he tried to dive inside of Magnussen, was forced wide and couldn’t find the racing line in time to defend his position. Plain inept driving!

      1. Didn’t Rosberg get to the Safety Car line at the pit lane exit before Magnussen, so he was supposed to be in front?

  2. Hm, well. I think its good that the thing Rosberg is most annoyed about his himself not making that chance of a pass on Hamilton stick.

    Because yeah, the SC hurt him a lot (as it did for the others in the top 3 at that moment), but that is what can happen with a SC. And he did not manage to move on Hamilton earlier. Hamilton on the other hand did as much as he could to get to the podium, and beat Rosberg.

    1. I think being stuck behind JEV for several laps hurt his race just as much as the SC itself.

      1. @jcost I think that’s the bottom line of his race; the fact that he couldn’t pass JEV pretty much cemented him out of the win.

    2. Not the top 3, but the top 4 was caught out by the safety car. The guy who was driving in P4 at the time finished in P2. The guy who ended up in P14 after the first safety car finished in P3. Rosberg was ahead of both at the time and still he only finished in P4.

      Rosberg really only has himself to blame that he didn’t deal well enough with the situation.

    3. @bascb not only that, he had the chance to recover but couldn’t overtake Magnussen and then lost out to Vergne…

      I’d be more annoyed with that… Lewis did it right away!

      1. Its really hard to tell though how much things like his brakes playing up a bit (and maybe being overly carefull not to break them as a result?) played their role.

        But the important thing is that he is annoyed about his own driving not being enough and not focusing on anything his team, the car or even Lewis did not do for him.

      2. I recall someone stuck behind Vergne for a few laps while Alonso built a bit of a gap.

  3. He needs to be careful how he comes across. The safety care issue is just pure luck as to where you are on track when it comes out. If he wanted to pass Hamilton then he should quit asking for help and just do it. The main criticism people have with Hamilton is his whining when things don’t go his way, rosberg is now doing exactly the same. If Hamilton had let him past he would have lost track position and finishing position to his main championship rival, please no team orders just let them race.

    1. @badger
      I’m not defending the team orders, because Nico was way too far behind for the move to be fair.

      But I think the team were just about justified with wanting Nico in front, because releasing Nico had a higher chance of yielding a 2nd/4th than the 3rd/4th which actually occurred.

      And from a team’s perspective, they need as many points as possible, which the team order would have achieved.
      But, to he honest, Mercedes are so far out in front in regards to the constructors, that they should have been willing to sacrifice those points to maintain whatever semblance of peace there still is between the two drivers.

      1. get real mate,merc are not desperate for wcc points.have you seen how much their leading the wcc by.whereas lewis is desperate for points.

        1. And who in their right mind will willingly throw away points?

          1. exactly … hope you saw it this way when Vettel was ignoring team orders (which were as stupid at the time) … let us know!

          2. I think that is exactly LH’s point, why should he slow down to let Nico pass and throw away WDC points.

            There was plenty of passing going on late in the race for Nico not to have at least gotten close enough to LH to make it look like he was trying to legitimately pass LH rather than demanding a freebie.

      2. I wonder what Hamilton would gain if he had let Rosberg through.
        Maybe a “well done mate” and a tap on the shoulder after the race.

        Two very important things on a championship Fight. Not.

      3. Absolutely disagree.

        Mercedes is running away with the constructors championship. Let the drivers decide the other.

        Lewis should be seen going to/from the McLaren motorhome.

        1. Mclaren? Seriously, they have no excuses for how poor they have become, big budget, big let down, just like Ferrari. Lewis wont be going anywhere for the next few years.

      4. But I think the team were just about justified with wanting Nico in front, because releasing Nico had a higher chance of yielding a 2nd/4th

        That isn’t what the team realised though. They thought that Rosberg would still finish behind Hamilton regardless, as they ignored Hamilton’s assertion that the mediums would not hold up. I’m not sure at that point where they thought their cars would finish, but it would probably be exactly where they ended up, or possibly with Hamilton and maybe also Rosberg having passed Alonso. They asked Hamilton to move over because they didn’t actually think it would impact Hamilton’s race. In retrospect it obviously would have, as he would have both lost time relative to everybody and given his title rival several more laps to try and pass him come the end of the race- in which case the order was unfair and probably probably wouldn’t have been given if they had any understanding of how the race would actually play out.

        1. Which is not something difficult.
          Hamilton did have this understanding. After all, they may not be on the same strategy, but they are racing the same race.

          The most important thing for both is to finish ahead of the other. And asking Hamilton to do that was the same as saying “let him get a better result than yours”. And as we saw with Alonso, Rosberg could go to the end with that set of tyres if they give it a try.

        2. no toto believes nico would have won if lewis moved out of the way,so they obviously didnt think lewis would still finish ahead regardless.they were only trying to help nico wn the race,eventhough lewis had a better chance on softs.

          1. Hmm. 3rd and 4th or 1st and 4th… Mercedes must be aiming to beat that 88 Mclaren record, and those drivers are clearly unable to win every race by themselves.

        3. If I was one of Merc bosses I would not dare ask Lewis to let Nico past after giving him a car that is unreliable which is the reason why Nico is leading the championship. After apologising to Lewis and saying that they are gutted for Lewis…..then these team orders. Are they really gutted? I doesn’t look like it to me.

      5. maybe he wasn’t to far behind. Maybe the team’s idea was to save tires and use them in the battle for a one-two or so … did that ever cross your mind? That is actually the only way this team order can be explained. I still think it was wrong, because it also automatically would have put LH even further behind. And for Nico it was not good either, because he could have gone right at it racing Lewis, which he started too late – counting on the team order. Lewis was wrong on so far, that he left Nico dangling, instead of telling the team that he was not going to follow the order. Lame! That is the very least he could have done.

      6. In short they did it for Nico not for the team.

  4. Well, tough luck Rosberg. The safety cars primary purpose is safety. The race situation is secondary….

    At least for this year.

    1. The safety cars primary purpose is safety. The race situation is secondary….

      That’s my feeling too @mike. If Rosberg was the driver in the Caterham – or the driver in the Safety Car, he’d want the Medical Car to arrive as fast as possible at the scene.

      IndyCar’s Holmatro safety crew is one of the best in the business to rescue around a track.

    2. As long as the drivers are allowed to pit during safety car, the safety cars have a much bigger role than simply ensuring safety on track.

      Every time a safety car comes in, the dice is rolled and depending on where you were on the track when this happened, your race may be ruined.

      It’s an artificial way to mix the pack and have more “interesting” races. I don’t think the drivers should be allowed to pit during safety car. As far as I know this is how it works in DTM for example; no mandatory pit stops are allowed during safety car periods.

      1. Not pitting would still be an artificial way to make more interesting races. Let’s say Max Chilton pitted for slick tyres just before the safety car was deployed. Then the SC comes out, bunching Chilton back up to the rest of the pack. After the SC comes in, everyones tyres are finished and they all need to pit, leaving Chilton in the lead.

        At least allowing pit stops under the SC allows for more strategic differences – should you pit under the safety car even if you don’t need to, meaning you may lose track position but have fresh rubber? Like Ricciardo did for the second SC.

        1. @minnis that is still a very different scenario comparing to having the entire track of cars racing to get to the pits.

          You definitely have a point though, some may get lucky either way.

      2. @markf1 as @minnis a Safety Car period will have consequences regardless of how it’s deployed. Some will lose and some will win. It’s the way it is.

    3. Completely agree.

      Watching the video puts a little more context around the strap line ‘Safety Car deployment was “wrong”’
      (ie he wasn’t complaining there was a safety car, just that it came out too quickly which allowed cars behind to pit and not him)

      But looking at the race again you can see why, the safety car and doctors car came out the pits at the same time, it was obviously that the safety car was deployed quickly to allow the doctors car on track without any of F1 cars catching it, even the slow delta time when the SC is out and a F1 car is not directly behind it, is probably quicker than the doctors car can go.

      Safety first, always…

    4. @mike It could be argued that by the Race Director waiting to call it out (apparently a 10 second delay since they saw the Ericsson crash), they were interfering with the race result by penalising the top 4 drivers – this already happened in Valencia 2010, and we didn’t like it at all then. However, now we are getting used to it – by 2015, we’ll wonder why anyone was complaining! See Indycar…

      1. Hitting SC straight away would have allowed the top 4 to just about scramble into the pits if they wanted to. Then, the medical car could also have gone out ASAP and not held up the top 4 train.

  5. He said there was no reason to deploy the SC in Germany a week ago, despite the Sauber parked on the track…

    This time he thinks it was a good call to deploy it, but before thinking about security officials were suppose to think about Nico’s race…

  6. I think he’s trying to draw attention away from the fact that he was legitimately mugged for position by 3-4 drivers in inferior cars whilst his team mate basically overtook the entire field, despite starting from the pitlane AND spinning on the opening lap.

    This was a terrible performance from ROS because he couldn’t control the race. The ball is back in HAM’s side of the court, for now.

    1. I agree. He had the best car and fresh tires. Once the brake issue was resolved he should have run everyone down and gone to the front of the field. Instead he cruised around behind JEV looking completely inept. By comparison, when Hamilton got his chance, he made quick work of JEV and went about his business.

  7. I think for someone so bitter and disappointed he handled this ok,
    Maybe the call to Lewis was Paddy’s choice ?
    anyway, he got tronced and that would hurt,

    Can anyone tell me if the safety car did anything legit wrong ?

    1. @greg-c No I don’t think the Safety Car driver did anything wrong. It was just slower than usual because of the Medical Car, which doesn’t happen often. Off the top of my head, the 2010 European Grand Prix (Webber’s flip) would be another example.

    2. @greg-c Not the SC, but the race director in delaying bringing it out..

  8. Hamilton could have simply handed the WDC title to Nico if he had let him pass.

    1. or thrown it at him . :)

      1. now THAT’S funny!!

    2. Really he would have handed his b@lls to Mercedes…

  9. The safety car goes out immediately when the medical car is deployed. He should know this and he should know that it’s luck of the draw. Safety comes first.

  10. SC shorter the gap from fastest top drivers to the rest, so this is just fair, but allowing the drivers from back to go first to pit is not right!
    On SC, pit should be inmidiate closed and open it when the leader is coming, allowing the leader goes first, then the rest.
    If driver on P2 does not go to pits and P1 does, ok, it is race strategy and fair to take the lead!

    1. To be honest the only driver Rosberg lost out to was Ricciardo , Massa (who was on the wrong tyres -medium) and Button (also on wrong tyres -inters). So he only really lost out to one guy.

      He was 4th at the restart, Hanilton was 13th. By the time the Mclarens pitted, he was down to 5th, Hamilton up to 7th. It wasn’t the safety that cost Rosberg vs Hamilton, it was his poor pace and inability to overtake.

      1. Exactly. The biggest winner of the 1st SC period was Ricciardo, while ROS lost just 1 position as Button and Massa made the wrong call, proved some laps later.

    2. Closing the pits during safety car ????? Would that not have been an even bigger gift for teams that foresaw the safety car and pitted before the SC was called, as I believe was the case for BUT and RIC ?

  11. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
    28th July 2014, 11:22

    I agree that the safety car hurt him, although its speed is fully justified by the presence of the slower C63 medical car in a situation when safety and the health of Ericsson was the priority, but what hurt Nico equally was his inability to overtake or hustle the rear wing of the car ahead in the manner Hamilton managed. Certainly, the way he was never especially within lunging distance of Vergne for so much of the race raises questions about his wheel-to-wheel prowess versus that of Hamilton; as does Bahrain, and that could prove crucial in the inevitable battles in the second half of the season. Between that and the pace Lewis showed on Friday, you would say that the Hungarian Grand Prix looked promising for Hamilton’s title challenge…

    1. the way he was never especially within lunging distance of Vergne for so much of the race raises questions about his wheel-to-wheel prowess

      But at the same point in the race Lewis was never within lunging distance of Vettel let alone Rosberg or JEV infront of him.

      As I said yesterday, Offline was still wet & through that phase of the race nobody was doing any overtaking or even really going offline to even try to overtake anyone because of how wet it still was.

      When the track dried offline cars started to overtake again & Nico himself passed a bunch of cars in his final 2 stints.

      1. Yeah I don’t think this was about lack of wheel-to-wheel prowess, but rather a lack of grip under tricky and variable conditions at that particular segment of the race.

        I admire NR for being the most disappointed in himself at his last passing attempt failing. That has annoyed him more than the bad luck with the safety car, or LH not letting him by. I’m sure as NR digests the day’s circumstances after the heat of the moment he will understand that sometimes the safety car can catch you out, and that under the same circumstances he probably would not have agreed to actually slowing to let LH by…let him by sure of he is much faster due to a different strategy and needing an extra stop…but only if he is way faster. NR needed to be as fast at that point as he was near the end, but he wasn’t. If he was, LH would likely have had no choice but to let NR go or really harm his own race defending, not to mention gathering the ire of the team as they were on different strategies.

      2. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
        28th July 2014, 18:32

        @robbie – I would say to both of you that Hamilton was making greater progress against Vettel, in that he was taking different lines and getting close on a more consistent basis, than Rosberg was to Vergne. The several botched passing attempts in T1 after the first safety car period was the poorest moment of Nico’s race and cost him several significant positions, namely Alonso and Vergne, and it was the compounded loss of track position to slower cars that damaged his race the most. Overall Rosberg simply didn’t drive with the aggression of Hamilton or Ricciardo, which might be wise when he’s in such a tight title fight, but on the evidence of Bahrain Nico will really need to find another gear in battle when he inevitably finds himself level with Lewis’ sidepod again.

        1. @william-brierty Fair comment. It just seemed to me his tires just weren’t helping him when he needed them the most, but I also think he didn’t help his own cause when he seemed to go off the dry line…perhaps that was because he was struggling to keep the car where he wanted it, but I sure recall thinking to myself a few times…what are you doing on the wet part of the track on slicks when there is a dry line?

          1. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
            29th July 2014, 12:15

            @robbie – Last weekend was an excellent illustration of how Nico Rosberg perhaps lacks the natural intuition of Lewis Hamilton in certain scenarios, with overtaking being one of them. Don’t think I’m pointing at Rosberg’s strangely controversial “driving advice” communication and saying he always needs help to beat Lewis; Monaco and Bahrain this year prove that Nico has the raw speed to take it to Lewis even when he’s on form, but I would say performances perhaps come more naturally to Lewis than they do to Nico. Not that that will especially hurt Nico’s title bid, and the gift of Hamilton versus the graft of Rosberg introduces an interesting dynamic to the championship.

  12. while the SC normally waits to pickup the leaders, in this situation the medical car was deployed instantly as the course worker gave the medical assistance signal by raising his arms above his head. I remember watching that with a sickening feeling in my stomach. Thankfully, ERI was all well. This is why the situation for the SC deployment was unusually quick. It ruined 4 drivers races’ and was just unlucky. At the time I was thinking how unlucky it was for VET.

    1. yea same here.. but marshal must hv done that after looking at medical light on the car..

    2. course worker gave the medical assistance signal by raising his arms above his head

      Indeed, I think most of us know what that means and the medical car came out pretty quickly. The priority was getting the medical car to the crash regardless of the race situation – but I presume no one told Nico about the nature of the crash.

  13. Oh come on Britney! For starters you were due a bit of bad luck! Secondly the safety car is not out to get you.

    1. Yes and as you can see by his video, he is frantically enraged by the whole thing.

  14. I’ve often wondered why they don’t close the pits like they do in a lot of other categories in order to ensure that nobody is massively disadvantaged.

    Its a bit like that absurd situation you have at le mans where there are 2 safety cars & your race can be helped or hurt depending on which one picks you up. There have been many cases where a driver has found himself half a lap behind a car he was racing at le mans just because he was the 1st car picked up by one safety car while the car ahead was able to race round to the next safety car.

    Or perhaps they could freeze the running order when the SC comes out so that everyone restarts in the order they were in when it came out.

    There have been too many cases over the years where a safety car has either helped or destroyed someone’s race & it just seems completely unfair to me, Especially if you consider that its possible (Although fortunately extremely rare) that a SC can be used to intentionally manipulate a race (The disgruntled Ex-Mercedes employee at hockenheim 2000 & Piquet Jr at Singapore 2008 are 2 examples).

    1. They tried this years ago (2007/8) and as typical for F1, the engineers & strategists instantly started working on how to game/gain an advantage from the situation.

      The pitlane was closed, but cars would stop anyway and take a penalty because they’d run out of fuel.

      1. There’s no refueling now (thankfully) so that would not be a problem.

        Al they need to do is what they do in Indycar. Nobody is allowed to pit while the pit lane is closed unless they have obvious damage (Puncture for instance).

      2. And at least the safety car has a vital purpose for randomly help/hinder drivers, unlike the hi-deg tyres that intentionally randomise performance gain or loss depending on the weather.

    2. I totally agree with you here. The Pit Lane should close as soon as Safety Car is deployed and the running order frozen. Once the Safety Car has picked up the leader and all of the cars are running behind the Safety Car the cars then take their stops and then reform behind the Safety Car in the order they were in when the field was frozen. Once this has been completed then the race can resume. It isn’t rocket science and much better than the idiotic idea of having a standing restart which I think is even more stupid than Bernie’s sprinkler idea.

    3. Closing the pits and then opening it up after all the cars have bunched up will certainly disadvantage the second car of a team.

      1. Indeed, F1 doesn’t have pit stalls for individual cars…

        As for closing the pits in general, that rule has generated a lot of complaints about race manipulation as well (see Indycar for an example).

    4. You’ve also got to consider in that situation (as mentioned above) that a car could have pitted before the safety car, hence when everybody pulled into the pits they would be leading on new-ish tyres.

  15. shut up rosberg

  16. It was on Sky, therefore it never happened. Since I haven’t been allowed to see the incident, I couldn’t care less about all this post-race bickering.
    Ricciardo does the PR so much better than these two, he shows F1 in a good light (and not many people do that right now)

  17. The safety car didn’t help but it didn’t lose the race for Nico, as I recall Alonso was also behind the safety car, so was Vettel. Alonso overtook Vettel Rosberg and JEV and led the race, had Alonso stopped for a third time he would have still finished ahead of Nico. So basically given Nico was third after Jenson and Kevin both pitted he was still in a good place to win the race. But he let both Alonso and JEV through and couldn’t overtake JEV, thats what lost him the win.

    1. Had Rosberg been #1 to the pit, he would have been able to control the race from the spot he’s most used to during this season: the front. The safety car definitely lost him the race here.

      His inability to overtake is another matter – but if Rosberg was still in the lead after the SC episode, I don’t think he would have lost a single position. It’s easy to control the race from the front as a Mercedes.

      1. True, but you have to adapt if the situation changes, you can’t just expect to always control from the front, sometimes you have to actually fight for the win. You didn’t see Alonso complain about the safety car coming at the wrong time, he just got on with it, and he almost won (this given he was behind Nico after the first stop).

  18. Funny that Rosberg is complaining about the safety car deployed. What does he think Rosberg comes before safety? Are safety cars being deployed now to make sure the leading driver is not affected?

    I think Nico needs to man up and race Lewis. He couldn’t get by him in Bahrain with a significant tyre advantage, nor could he mount a serious challenge here in Hungary.

    Since when did Nico become so reliant on team orders to get by his teammate?

    1. The safety car comes out and ensures that it picks up the leading driver, this rule was in place after Turkey when some drivers where affected by it coming out so early. With that being said it is not the safety cars responsibility to let Nico pit before coming out, you cant’ have Charlie call the teams and tell them Im thinking of brining the safety car out so pit now if you don’t want to be affected. The safety car came out when it did and that was just bad luck on Nico. But he could have still won the race.

      1. Of course safety comes first and to suggest NR thinks otherwise is unfair. If they have to just get the safety car and a medical car out there no matter where the cars are, that’s fine and correct, but I’m not convinced they shouldn’t adjust things once the safety issue, which is the priority, is dealt with. So I guess the golden question is should a safety car be able to take the top 4 cars and displace them? Or should perhaps their positions be locked in place as soon as the decision is made to deploy the car, even if the car isn’t physically out on the track yet? Let the 4 cars do their pit a lap after everyone else and then be able to take back their spot they were in at the time the safety car announcement halted any racing for position. If all along over the years a safety car could be used to scupper a leader’s race, or several of the top cars, wouldn’t we have seen a ton of intentional crashes by now to the point where they simply would lock in the order to avoid such things occurring? Do we want the timing and literally the pace of a safety car and a medical car determining the race outcomes, or should they be a necessary but neutral aspect?

        1. There was a car almost on the track after a giant shunt. They deployed the SC and that’s it. The pits are open, the rule is that and has been for years. NR was in the wrong place at wrong time, that’s all. His complaints made his race even more ridiculous.

  19. The pit entrance could have been closed to prevent others from taking an unfair advantage. Once the SC has collected all the drivers, they can re-open it for the teams to attend to their cars. Safety ensured and leader’s position is not affected as well.

    I believe they had the pit lane closure at some point in the early years. Wonder what made them change it though. Or I could be totally wrong about the rule being in place earlier.

    Good for him to acknowledge his inability to pass Lewis. All other actions wouldn’t have mattered and he would have scored a few more points over his team mate.

    Good Luck Rosberg for the second half of the season.

    1. I believe they had the pit lane closure at some point in the early years. Wonder what made them change it though. Or I could be totally wrong about the rule being in place earlier.

      I suspect Bernie had something to do with it, changing this would create more of a spectacle, had they closed the pit lane the racers would all come back where they were and the same follow the leader would have continued. So to make it more exciting leave the pitlane open and make it more of a gamble ;)

    2. The rule was on for just 2 years: 2007 and 2008. Back then it was silly because fuel was a crucial factory in race strategies. So after few hiccups (drivers that absolutely had to come in despite the closed pit-lane or they would’ve run out of fuel), FIA dropped it for 2009.
      Now the situation is radically different: since there is no need for refuelling during the race, it all comes down to a “free pit” and an unfair advantage for those who happen to be at the right place at the right time. IMHO they should bring that rule back or, even better, let the cars pit in whatever order and then have them re-create the same order they were in before the SC deployment.

  20. I think Rosberg probably didn’t weight his words too carefully, though I don’t mind him complaining about the safety car a bit, and anyway it’s nice he always does these post-race videos. I’m still baffled by the whole team order episode though, and I find it embarrassing that Rosberg brings it up again. Does he really expect his only championship rival to move over for him, so he can score more points (in the process also finishing ahead of Hamilton)? Words fail me to describe how ridiculous I find this notion.

    1. @adrianmorse I think of it this way. It is not a question of did HE really expect his only rival to move over for him…the TEAM did…THEY made the order…so why wouldn’t NR expect that? It was a simply theory that being on an extra stop meant NR had to make up time to maximize his strategy and his day. That’s what they’re there to do.

      So envision if NR was much faster than LH, like he was near the end, but mid-race like when the order was given. Sure NR was faster, but not by 2.5 to 3 secs like near the end. But what would the conversation be like around the water cooler if LH went against the team and tried to hold back a much faster NR needing to make up time to do an extra stop? I doubt LH would be looked upon in quite the same light. On the same strategies…sure…hold him back…race it out…it’s for the win and ultimately the WDC. But the team put them on different strategies. That to me put some onus on LH to allow half the team to see their strategy through. Not the way it played out, sure. But again, what if NR was right on LH’s gearbox? Even Lauda said LH would have let NR go if that was the case. So I don’t get why people see so much ridiculousness in this, other than perhaps looking at it with the luxury of hindsight.

      And sure, there are those who would have applauded LH even if he held back a very much faster NR and did it against team orders, but half the team, and many fans, would have thought that would have been unsporting and in poor taste and selfish, to scupper half the team and not allow them to maximize their driver’s chance. Some would have thought that the sign of a true WDC…others, the equivalent of cranking the boost against team orders in order to stay ahead ie. needing a cheap shot to win. WDC-level do-what-it-takes type stuff, sure…honorable and sporting? Not so much.

      1. @robbie, I don’t agree it would be unsporting of Hamilton to keep Rosberg behind, even if Nico had been much faster. In the current situation of having no other WDC challenger, and having the WCC all but wrapped up, the drivers should not be asked to move over for each other, and Toto Wolff has since admitted as much.

        If there had been a five-way title battle like in 2010, or if the WCC had been on the line, or if they had not been fighting for the WCC, then the discussion might be different. Even so, in the past team orders were banned because they were seen as unsporting, not drivers racing on track.

        1. @adrianmorse Fair comment. I don’t entirely disagree but I do think Nico would have a bit more support if his strategy was scuppered by LH in a dramatic way, let’s say. Am about to read the admission by Wolff you refer to but that’s hindsight now. At the time they did in fact request LH not make it difficult for NR strictly due to different strategies, and I do think the tone would be a bit different toward NR if LH had really gone out of his way to hold NR back.

          Team orders were banned after an extremely blatant act, that of Reubens letting MS by in Austria 02, and I’m just saying LH holding back NR much more blatantly would have been looked on differently by some, including within the team.

  21. I don’t think eHarmony could have put together a more well-suited couple. Nico and Lewis whine and moan and carry on about things that are beyond their control, as if life itself is out to get them. Nico should shut up about the safety car, whose ONLY mission is SAFETY FIRST, PERIOD/FULL STOP, END OF STORY. Safety first means the moment there is an unsafe situation, the correct steps are taken IMMEDIATELY to deal with that situation without concern for anything else. At that point, the race becomes irrelevant until the safety situation is dealt with.

    Nico SHOULD be MASSIVELY annoyed with HIMSELF, because he failed one of the tests of a true champion: he had ONE shot at passing Lewis at the end and chose a place where he had to place his car perfectly to control the corner and couldn’t. He chose to try the outside of Turn 2 where Lewis could ride him out over the kerbs and drop him so completely that he lost any chance to try again before the finish line. I have to hand it to Lewis: he knows how to overtake, and he knows how to defend. If Nico wants the WDC this year, he better learn quickly.

  22. The safety car will always affect the race, it’s part of F1 and drivers need to adapt to it accordingly. I guess the SC in Bahrain has been forgotten already but I guess that’s to due with Nico not being able to take advantage of the situation the SC gave him there.

  23. Then Lewis didn’t let me by, although he was ordered to do so, that’s obviously not good

    One of the most pathetic statements I’ve ever heard from a racing driver or sports person of any sort. Doubly so now Mercedes have stated the ‘order’ was a mistake.

    1. If that hasn’t changed the way people view Nico I wonder what will. The killer for him was really being unable to pass Vergne when Lewis did it on his first attempt. Sometimes you’ve actually got to put in work on a Sunday rather than expect to lead from the front all the time.

    2. Have to agree, especially after being so quick to deny he asked for the order. He was depending on it rather than his driving. Good sign for Lewis IMO, especiallly as you say with the team effectively withdrawing the order.

      1. What rubbish. The order was made by the team, not insisted on by NR. He only questioned it because he was told LH was to let him through. It’s not pathetic at all. An order like this has been done many times when one driver is faster and has to make up time due to his strategy requiring an extra stop. To say it is doubly pathetic because NOW Merc is saying it was a mistake is pathetic and looking at the whole thing in hindsight.

        The killer for NR was how he had bad luck with the safety car. Without that he would not have had to pass Vergne. Safety is first, and NR and everyone agrees with that, but that shouldn’t mean they can’t put 4 guys who got screwed by the safety car back in their earned positions before going racing again. Safety cars and the medical car and their pace should not be able to affect the outcome of a race other than to bunch the cars up but in the same order as when the safety car was deployed. I think the order they are in when the safety car is first announced and not even on the track yet, should be locked in.

        NR was on a different strategy so nobody should have been surprised at the order…the same order that has been given between two teammates on different strategies many many times throughout the years. If NR depended on it, or expected it, that should be no surprise as he was faster, just not faster enough, and had to make another stop vs. LH. When a team puts one of their guys on an extra stop, that guy has an extra 20 or so seconds to make up vs. the guys on one less stop. This is F1 101.

        I reiterate though, LH was right that he shouldn’t have had to slow to let NR go, and so he didn’t and that is fair game. It was NR’s responsibility to be even faster than he was vs LH at that point, and he was faster but not enough faster. I’m assuming he didn’t forget how to drive fast, and rather he was doing his best on those tires at that point, as he sure was flying near the end.

        1. Rubbish was Nico driving. Didn’t even come close to overtake Hamilton when the idiotic order came and spent “hours” behind Vergne.

    3. Did anybody alse notice Rosberg whining about Vergne speeding past the stricken Force India of Perez under the safety car? That was pathetic!!

  24. Is Britney getting a MANICURE there?

    We need more consistency around the safety car.

  25. Neil (@neilosjames)
    28th July 2014, 20:13

    But, as I said elsewhere… even from fourth behind the SC, he should still have walked it.

  26. LotsOfControl (@for-unlawful-carnal-knowledge)
    28th July 2014, 20:54

    Perhaps Rosberg isn’t the best overtaker of the lot, at least he’s not a crash driver like Hamilton.

    The thing about Hamilton is if he doesn’t crash into others (3 times in Germany) the he tends to crash himself on a first lap. LOL
    Lucky, lucky,lucky……

    1. lewis takes risks,thats why he has so many fans,he goes for it like a true racer.and at the end of the day he beat nico despite starting from the pitlane.

    2. That’s racing and that’s why Lewis has won more races in his career than Nico including 1 Championship whilst Nico has 0. At least Lewis wants to win fairly whereas Nico wants to win with either the help of team orders or cheating when he created his own pole position.

      1. LotsOfControl (@for-unlawful-carnal-knowledge)
        29th July 2014, 15:48

        @matt and @gm
        Crash driver none the less.

  27. gladys matope
    28th July 2014, 21:48

    Why would Nico expect to be given a place by Lewis? Another gift again? Aren’t 2 DNFs and 2 mechanical problems compared to Nico’s 1 DNF enough gifts? Nico is leading the championship but winning it is a different thing.

  28. This won’t go well in the long run …. He is an excellent driver, just do not count on him as a team mate ever. Always treat him as a driver from any other team! That is what it comes down to with him.

  29. HAHAHAHA, yeah, what’s next? Will talk to Vergne for not letting you pass?
    Alonso and Hamilton were behind after the safety car and finished ahead.. That tells the history..

  30. He can complain all he likes but it’s swings and roundabouts. Ricciardo was caught out when the second safety car caused him to lose his lead of nearly nine seconds. Anyway, it will be worse next year when some will have to do a standing start on worn tyres, when others may have had a chance to dive into the pits for fresh rubber. If he thinks the current situation is unfair, next year is far far worse.

  31. The timing of the first safety car is the least of Nico’s problems. Despite all the problems Lewis has had over this year, he has raced better, finished ahead of him when he had no right to and is only 11 points behind. The only time when the reverse has happened in the year and a half when they have been driving the same car is Bahrain 2013 [when the Mercs were low on fuel?], suspect that if the order hadn’t come out to hold station that would have still ended the same, but now we’ll never know.

    Nico’s inconvenient parking during Monaco Q3 came only days after Lewis questioned his desire to win. Lewis intimated directly afterwards that he would address that situation on track, perhaps like Senna, fortunately this has been through speed and not the other tactic Senna was infamous for. I don’t expect Lewis to give any favours to Nico this year and surprisingly has even recently praised Jenson as a team mate, who he did on occasion let past for strategic reasons. Subtext of course being that my team mate this year is not to be trusted.

    Worst of all for Nico, the last two races have indicated that Lewis’ best option may be to take a 10 grid place engine penalty early and have a fresher engine for the double-pointer because he will likely not lose out as badly as Nico would under the same circumstances.

  32. Of course the Safety Car deployment timing was wrong, when seen from Rosberg’s perspective. But the timing of the safety car can’t be decided by what’s convenient for the race leader. It is the *safety* car, after all. And in this case, the medical car was called for by the track marshal who first responded to the incident, and it must be allowed to drive to the scene without being surrounded by racing cars (iow, it has to drive in front of the SC). Yes, it was unfortunate for those who had already passed the pit entry, but safety must always come first.

    If anything, maybe this would make an argument for closing the pits during safety car running. Not even the Le Mans “slow zone” concept (which I otherwise feel is the best way to allow the marshals to work safely, while keeping the time intervals between the cars intact) would have helped here, since the medical car was called for.

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