Rosberg is worried about Mercedes as he sees ‘strain rising’

Toto Wolff Nico Rosberg PA

Internal strain and pressure at Mercedes are increasing, according to Nico Rosberg, and it’s only reasonable given the team’s latest performance woes.

Toto Wolff Nico Rosberg PA

Nico Rosberg has spoken out about “increased pressure” at Mercedes, with the defending Constructors’ Champions having no chance to join the championship challenge with Red Bull and Ferrari.

Lewis Hamilton finished 13th, a lap behind defending champion Max Verstappen, after a furious performance at Imola.

Over the weekend, video leaked of angry Toto Wolff conversing with Hamilton in the garage, with their facial expression indicating a little argument.

While both Hamilton and Wolff played down the incident, claiming that they were simply stating their displeasure with the way qualifying had gone, senior Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg believes there is more to it than they are letting on.

Rosberg: Toto, in my opinion, was enraged by Lewis

“It’s definitely a very, very tough situation for Lewis,” Rosberg told Sky Sports F1.

“He’s won a race in every single year of his career, and it looks like this might be the year where he can’t win any more.

“You can see how the tension is rising. We saw how Toto, in my view, was angry at Lewis [after qualifying], because maybe Lewis criticised the team a little bit too harshly over the team internal radio about something they did.

“The tension’s rising, and that’s natural, and Lewis will obviously start to show those emotions a little bit.

“Nevertheless, with the experience he has, I think he will eventually manage to keep those under control.”

Rosberg understands his old teammate’s situation

Rosberg, who quit Formula One after defeating Hamilton to win the 2016 Drivers’ Championship, confessed of feeling terrible for his former teammate.

“It was tough to see Lewis in that state; he’s really down, which is understandable,” he said.

“It is a long season, but they’re nowhere with that car. They’re not even going to be able to fight for race wins any time soon, so it’s difficult for Lewis to keep his motivation up.

“I think he will manage, because he really is a fighter, and remember there’s always that thing that he still wants to beat his teammate. That’s really, really important to him.

“With George performing so well, that could be the biggest motivator for Lewis to just keep going and keep fighting.”

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