Rosberg ‘blocking out’ thoughts of title win in Mexico

2016 Mexican Grand Prix

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Nico Rosberg says he is not entertaining thoughts of winning the world championship ahead of Sunday’s potentially title-deciding race.

Rosberg has a slim chance to secure the crown this weekend if he wins the Mexican Grand Prix and team mate Lewis Hamilton finishes outside the top nine.

But the points leader says avoiding thoughts of the championship has been a key to his success so far this year.

“My goal is to try and win there just as it has been at every race,” said Rosberg. “Of course, to be in a championship battle at the end of the year is awesome and I’m excited about that. But my approach is to keep it simple.”

“There are many things that can happen during a race weekend which are out of your control, so it’s best to just block all that out and focus on the job at hand. That’s what’s worked best for me and how I feel at my strongest.”

Rosberg won last year’s Mexican Grand Prix which was the first held on the revised Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez circuit. He described the layout as “like being back at a kart circuit with all the tight corners and the noise”.

“The atmosphere in the stadium section is really phenomenal,” he added. “Standing on that podium last year was one of the best moments of my career, so I hope I can get back up there and experience it again.”

2016 Mexican 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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    37 comments on “Rosberg ‘blocking out’ thoughts of title win in Mexico”

    1. I know he says every weekend that he doesn’t think about the title and takes the season on a race-by-race basis, but I have to say that he looked really, really cautious at Austin from what I could see. When behind Ricciardo, he was driving like a man solely thinking about just getting podiums in the final few races. He was behind Dan for over 20 laps yet never even bothered to get in the DRS zone, yet once he got ahead of Dan he pulled away very easily (so it’s not like he didn’t have the pace advantage). At lead that’s how I saw it.

      1. I think he was saving up his medium tyres to attack Ricciardo on the soft tyre in the last stint.

        Rosberg can afford to finish 2nd every race, but he can’t afford getting third every weekend…

      2. I see your point, but remember Malaysia where he took a lot of risk to get past Raikkonnen.

      3. I actually think @paeschli is right there @kingshark and Rosberg was just biding his time, keeping close enough to push DAniel not to slow down too much while at the same time managing his tyres. As soon as Daniel pitted he streaked off ahead with a purple lap to close the gap towards the front and prepare for either keeping ahead after his pitstop or battling it out on his soft tyres in the last stint

      4. petebaldwin (@)
        26th October 2016, 12:12

        I think that is missing the point. Rosberg needs to think about the next race rather than getting excited about being Champion. There are 3 races left and a small mistake at any of them could lose it for him so rather than looking at where he will be at the end of the championship, he needs to focus fully on Mexico, finish at least 2nd and then focus fully on Brazil.

        I suppose the best way to explain it is by saying that without the pressure of the Championship fight, you would expect Rosberg to finish at least 2nd in the remaining 3 races. Therefore, if he can take each race one at a time and do what is required (which isn’t winning the race – despite what he says), he should be able to easily cruise home in 2nd winning him his first WDC!

        There is no gap to chase down, no major challenges to overcome and superhuman efforts required. Rosberg just needs to shut off from the outside pressure

        1. I don’t think winning another race this season will be hard for Rosberg, he just needs one good start.

          If he manages to do so he can even allow himself to finish third afterwards.

          1. Rosberg can feel strengthened by how last season ended. He figured out then how to win and Hamilton had no real chance to win when he was chasing, never became close.

    2. Heh, reminds me of the winning caption from last week’s competition 😃

      1. Yep :)
        I wonder how long these articles can go for. A week later we ll probably see one saying “Rosberg STILL doesnt think about his chances”. And then an interview with him. And a picture of him with a caption saying “guess what I’m thinking about? A pigeon!!”

        Not criticising journos too much here, just saying… the job they have with him is cloer to “impossible” than to “difficult” :)

        1. The same as “Mercedes expects to definitely be under pressure from rivals this weekend, because ..reasons” articles.

          1. Fudge Kobayashi (@)
            26th October 2016, 10:22

            This. Seems these have literally been the only stories the last few months:

            * Rosberg not thinking about title
            * Mercedes expects tough fight for win at next race
            * Hamilton has 100% faith in Mercedes

            F1 journalism is as stagnant as the constructors championship at the moment.

            1. @offdutyrockstar @mateuss @minilemm I’ve been trying not to let it get too repetitive and I hope you notice that when you search for those phrases on this site you get the following:

              ‘Rosberg not thinking about title’ – This article, obviously, but nothing else which matches that angle:

              ‘Mercedes expects tough fight for win at next race’ – Again nothing which really matches that:

              ‘Hamilton has 100% faith in Mercedes’ – Same again:

            2. Fudge Kobayashi (@)
              26th October 2016, 13:06

              Not so much a commentary on your journalism or the roundup Keith, in fact this and one other site are my only daily visited sites with relation to F1, my comment is more so aimed at the monotony of the Mercedes PR machine trying to manufacture fake suspense or drama when I cannot think of one example (except perhaps the first 15 seconds of the Spanish GP) where the team or indeed drivers have not fluffed things and denied us a single wheel to wheel race long duel between the two championship contenders. I know thats a combination of drivers error, equipment failure and strategy but its just bloody annoying we haven’t seen anything close to Bahrain 2014 since Bahrain 2014.

            3. Fudge Kobayashi (@)
              26th October 2016, 13:08

              And the three examples cited were again, not aimed at articles you have written Keith, but the dross which Toto, Nico and Lewis regurgitate across interviews and all weekend, every weekend.

            4. @keithcollantine – I’m pretty sure that none of these comments were directed at you; rather, they are an indictment of Mercedes’ formulaic approach to news sound bites, particularly the “challenge” the team faces.

      2. I do realize that Rosberg has slightly changed his tune – instead of “not thinking” about title, he’s now “blocking” thoughts of it. I’d have to say that’s a fair and honest admission – it is inevitable that thoughts of the championship will creep in, but he’s making an effort to set that aside to give his best to each race. In his place, we would probably be attempting to do the same.

        1. Fudge Kobayashi (@)
          26th October 2016, 14:54

          Spot on @phylyp

    3. Nico is in a good position…

      But Lewis is seriusly focused right now, or atleast.was in Austin.

      I feel when both do a 100% Lewis has 2 tenths of extra magic in quali.

      Nico is at 100% more often tha. Lewis this year, and it is paying him dividends.

      1. I thought they were both 100% in Suzuka and the gap was 0.013s in Rosberg’s favour.

        1. I thought they were both at 100% in Monza (as told by Nico in the post qualy press conference)

          But…. Nico was a greater part of 5 tens off!

      2. Once Snapchat releases a new selfie animal chat filter, we’ll see Nico rise again.

    4. To be honest, his title would not be won from Lewis in battle, but picked up after all this reliability stuff…maybe just like his father`s

      1. And Alonso’s…..

        1. And Lauda’s third…

          1. Also Prost’s third…
            When 2 drivers are very close in ability and machinery then reliability/luck can be the deciding factor.

      2. I feel like this is going to haunt his title forever even though it’s not true.

        1. @dh1996 It is true. Nico is leading due to Hamilton’s reliability issues. We all know this, no point in pretending otherwise.

        2. What should haunt it is how inconsistent Hamilton is and how great the merc is. If Rosberg becomes champion I would argue it to be a blow to Hamiltons greatness.

          In the end it has been all about the mercedes the past 3 years…for instance Massa and Bottas in merc would probably have been 2x Bottas and this year Massa.

          or to make it more extreme: Erikson and Maldonado at merc would have seen them switch titles in the past 3 years as well.

    5. rosbergwillstillloseit
      25th October 2016, 22:20

      i think he will get at least 1 DNF and lewis will luck into the championship

      1. spafrancorchamps
        25th October 2016, 23:44

        Lewis will luck into the championship? If he had luck, he would have been champion already. If one would be lucky to become F1 champion this season, it would be Rosberg. He’d be the most lucky champion in the history of the sport, and folks will never value his title.

        1. rosbergwillstillloseit
          26th October 2016, 20:46

          spain lewis stole nico his 25 points by taking him out of the race
          monaco team order against rosberg because car problems
          canada lewis forced him off the track
          britain nico becomes 3rd for stupid radio rule
          malaysia spun by vettel and stupid penalty
          that was nicos bad luck
          now lewis
          starting last in china cause car problems
          starting 10th in russia but overtook several cars by driving off the track in lap 1 > luck
          starting last in belgium but drove to the podium because other teams screwed up > luck
          canada no penalty for forcing nico off the track > luck
          engine failure in malaysia
          and dont forget the gifted places and wins in australia canada and monaco
          bad luck is pretty even and the point gap is fair imo

    6. Seriously, I wonder why media people even ask about it.

      Even if it was on his mind (and it would be because he’s human), he’s not going to say anything other than I’ll be trying to win every race.

      It’s not like he hasn’t got the car that’s capable or the skills to go with it so there’s no reason at all not to go for the win.

      If at the end of the first lap he’s not near the front, that’s when damage limitation kicks in, and that’s where the championship lead starts coming into the mind.

      Really no point to these press articles at all. I know they’re “relevant” but to expect any answer than the one he gave would be madness.

    7. Isn’t blocking illegal now?

      1. It depends on what you mean by blocking.

    8. Japan MotoGP: Marc got his title earlier than anybody expected, both Yamahas had a terrible race.
      Nico getting his long overdue WDC is more likely than Marc’s was. Lewis can just bin it, as he has done plenty of times before.

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