Nico Rosberg claims that his mistake in the closing stages of last Sunday’s United States Grand Prix was caused by a gust of wind.
With nine laps to go in Austin, Rosberg led the race by two seconds over Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton, and looked poised to end a winless streak that dates back to the Austrian Grand Prix in June.
However, a mistake at turn 16 saw the German run wide, letting Hamilton through. The Briton’s victory was enough to clinch a third Formula 1 title with three races to spare.
When asked about the error ahead of this weekend’s race in Mexico, Rosberg told reporters: “It was a gust of wind, a big one. Seriously!
“Everybody has it so you can’t use it as an excuse. It’s still a mistake. I understand my mistake now. It was a very unusual scenario that happened just once in all those laps.”
Rosberg enters the final three races of the season looking to recover second place in the championship standings from Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel, who currently leads the Mercedes driver by four points.
Despite already having the championship won, Hamilton revealed on Friday that he will not be making any special efforts to help Rosberg beat Vettel to second in the standings.
“The team has not asked me to support him in that role as I’m here to win the race,” Hamilton said.
“The team has won the constructors’ championship so I think from here on there’s not really a huge benefit for the team for me to start helping. We’ll see what Toto wants me to do.”