Nico Rosberg had a race that was the stuff of nightmares today in Bahrain. After starting the race on pole position, he slowly fell backwards throughout the race to eventually finish 9th, scoring just two points.
“A tough day for me. As nice as it was to start from pole this afternoon, it was just as hard to finish in ninth place. I didn’t feel comfortable in the car today and it wasn’t much fun out there really,” Rosberg explained in a team statement.
“We switched to a four-stop strategy at the end of my third stint but it wasn’t enough. We were using the rear tires too much and at the end, I was really struggling and wasn’t able to push hard enough.”
Rosberg believes that Mercedes has to work hard over the three week break before the Spanish Grand Prix in order to rectify the situation.
“There is a lot of work ahead and we need to focus on why our race performance isn’t matching the pace that we can show in qualifying. Hopefully we can make some steps here before the European season starts.”
Mercedes has claimed two pole positions so far this season, but results of 3rd and 9th is not the kind of conversion that the team will have be looking for. Managing tire wear will be the priority, as four stops should have been the “safe” strategy from pole. Instead, Rosberg will be licking his wounds after a hard weekend.