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Nico Rosberg Q&A: We had a very productive day 12 Apr 2013

Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 in the Press Conference.
Formula One World Championship, Rd3, Chinese Grand Prix, Preparations, Shanghai, China, Thursday, 11 April 2013 Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W04.
Formula One World Championship, Rd3, Chinese Grand Prix, Practice, Shanghai, China, Friday, 12 April 2013 Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W04.
Formula One World Championship, Rd3, Chinese Grand Prix, Practice, Shanghai, China, Friday, 12 April 2013 Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W04.
Formula One World Championship, Rd3, Chinese Grand Prix, Practice, Shanghai, China, Friday, 12 April 2013 Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W04.
Formula One World Championship, Rd3, Chinese Grand Prix, Preparations, Shanghai, China, Thursday, 11 April 2013 Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W04 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W04 battle.
Formula One World Championship, Rd2, Malaysian Grand Prix, Race, Sepang, Malaysia, Sunday, 24 March 2013 Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1.
Formula One World Championship, Rd3, Chinese Grand Prix, Preparations, Shanghai, China, Thursday, 11 April 2013

After taking his first Formula One win in Shanghai in 2012, Nico Rosberg picked up where he left off on Friday, setting the fastest time in FP1 and the fourth best time in FP2. Here's what he had to say after a productive first day in China...

Q: Nico, it looked like a good day for you today - are you satisfied with how things went?
Nico Rosberg:
Yes, it was a very productive day. We’ve been able to run our program and the car feels really good. I think the day proved that we should be pretty competitive here. The morning session went swimmingly, there was a little hiccup in the afternoon, but overall a promising start into the weekend. Of course this track holds a sweet memory for me, as it was where I won my first F1 race, so maybe this gives me a bit of extra boost here as of course I would like to repeat that.

Q: Can you think back in time to one year ago and describe how it felt?
NR:
Ah, my first win - that was a very emotional moment. A very intense situation! It took me quite a while to get there so there were a lot of pent-up feelings that finally had an outlet. Winning the first race for this Mercedes team - that was awesome. To share the moment with the whole team - that was overwhelming. Winning is just about the limit! (laughs)

Q: Has that win changed you?
NR:
No. Maybe the best thing is that when it comes my way again it will not be a completely unfamiliar situation!

Q: You’ve always done well in China. Why is that so?
NR:
Funnily enough I don’t have any real explanation for that. Yes, I like the track, and yes, I’ve done well here in the past, but why this is so? No idea, because it’s not so that if you do well once at a track, it means that you will always do well there. There is always adaptation in the game - the cars are different, the tyres are completely different - so there are so many factors that matter. And thank God it is that way because imagine the other way around: if you do bad on a track and it would mean that you do bad there forever! (laughs) So what really matters is to get through your program on Friday, deliver an excellent qualifying and push on Sunday. And that is exactly my plan. From the feeling today I do indeed expect a good race and a good result.

Q: So what would you guess as a result?
NR:
I’m a race driver and not a fortune teller! So what I can do is to look at the indicators: we had a constantly fast and good car at the first two races so the odds are good that we can keep that level here and next week in Bahrain. Definitely thumbs up.

Q: Result wise?
NR:
A podium finish should be within reach if the soft tyres stay with me a bit longer. After half a lap they completely disintegrated so I predict a sizzling race!

Q: Thinking back to Malaysia, how was it being faster than your team mate Lewis Hamilton but not being allowed to overtake?
NR:
Of course this is an ambivalent situation and as everybody can imagine it is absolutely not to my liking. But I respect my boss. It probably was a bit unfortunate that we hadn’t discussed such a situation before the race, but that is solved now for the future.

Q: But why did you obey? Somebody in another team ignored a team order…
NR:
I don’t want to compare! I only want to speak for me: we are one team and together we fight for the championship. If you have plans to win it you need the backing of your team, and that involves respecting orders, especially from your boss.

Q: Niki Lauda said that because there was no immediate pressure from behind he would have let you race and, potentially, overtake Lewis. What do you make of that?
NR:
I don’t want to comment on that - and in fact it is history. As I just said before, we have been talked about such a situation after the race and set a strategy for the future. It is out of my head. What is in my head right now is that the car feels really good and that I want to attack, attack, attack on Sunday.

Q: Another issue that came up since Malaysia is that there is a number one driver in the team. Is that so?
NR:
Counter question: have you asked Sebastian Vettel if he is the number two driver now after he was told not to overtake Mark Webber in Malaysia? Ah, you see! What I can say for Mercedes is that we don’t have a number one or number two driver. That’s how it was for all of the past three years where my team mate was seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher! Is this answer enough?

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