AUSTIN, Texas – Nico Rosberg refuses to discuss the C-word – championship – and is maintaining his traditional, steadfast “I’m going for the race win” mentality heading into this weekend’s United States Grand Prix from Circuit of The Americas.
The German holds a 33-point lead over his teammate at Mercedes AMG Petronas, Lewis Hamilton, and could win his maiden World Championship in Formula 1 even if he finishes second to Hamilton in each of the final four races.
This would make him the second son of a World Champion (father Keke) to win a title if he does so. Both Graham and Damon Hill have won titles, and that’s the only father-son pairing.
But in Rosberg’s media availability today in Austin, he was more channeling his inner Marshawn Lynch, and “Beast Mode’s” famous/infamous “I’m here so I won’t get fined” Super Bowl availability – than allowing himself to think about the title.
“It’s not something I’ve been thinking about,” Rosberg said of the title.” I’m not sure how much pressure Lewis has put on himself. For me it’s business as usual. I’m just trying to win the race this weekend, like I have the last three years.”
Rosberg continued with the stoic focus for further questions.
“I definitely don’t put any thought into that at all,” he said about second places. “I’m going for the win this weekend and that’s it. I’m not going for second places or anything as such.”
He also refused to acknowledge his past record, noting he’s already carrying a nine-six win edge over Hamilton heading into the weekend and has proven he can win at tracks where he hasn’t in the past. In Austin, he’s come second to Hamilton each of the last two years after starting on pole.
“It’s something I don’t think about,” he said. “As we’ve seen so often this year it has no importance. I can win on any track against Lewis. This weekend for me we’re starting from scratch. It’ll be difficult against him always. He’ll be motivated. He’ll be at his best. We’ll see.”
This morning, Hamilton said if he didn’t win the World Championship, he’d “take it like a man.”
Rosberg wouldn’t answer how he’d feel if he didn’t win it, because, as he noted, he’s not thinking about it.
“I haven’t thought of that because I’m planning to go for more race wins at the moment, and that’s it,” he said. “If I can repeat what I’ve been saying. Negative thoughts, I’ll fully avoid. That won’t make me faster. How would I feel if I lose? That won’t work.”
But Rosberg did say why he was a happy camper for this session.
“All I’m thinking about is Austin GP weekend,” he said. “I just called my wife before speaking to you guys. That’s why I’m in a good mood.”