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Nico Rosberg Q&A: Better to have problems now than later!

20 Feb 2014

Technical problems meant that Mercedes’ Nico Rosberg brought out the red flags twice in Thursday’s test session in Bahrain. But, as the German explains, it’s far better for Mercedes to have problems in pre-season testing than when the real action gets underway in Australia in March…

Q: Nico, have you retained the good feeling that you had in Jerez here in Bahrain?

Nico Rosberg: Well, the good feeling that I had in Jerez came mainly from the reliability that we had there - and yes, it also worked good here, even if we’ve had a few more issues here than weeks ago in Jerez. And that is good because we want to see the problems and where they are on the car. Of course there are some - having no problems with these huge (technical) changes would simply be impossible. The more mileage we do, the more we realise where the things are that are not ideal - and we can address them. It’s better (to have problems) here than in Melbourne! On the pace side we have only indications - but my guess is that next week we will be a lot wiser.

Q: In general it seems that Mercedes is less plagued by issues than some of the other teams in the pit lane. Can you confirm that?

NR: Ha, that depends how you see it. One thing is for sure: issues are issues, no matter how small. But we probably have a bit of an upper hand when it comes to reliability. And of any issues that we might have: it is better to have them here and now and to address them immediately. So stopping on the track is not necessarily a bad thing!

Q: All the drivers say that these new cars are completely different to those of the past years. Can you describe what is so different?

NR: We are slower. We are slipping more. The car is heavier. That’s a bit sad, as I would love to go faster, but that’s how it is. I was able to balance the car pretty good in the afternoon - and yes, the feeling improved. I know by now where all the buttons are - and that’s good news! I was able to attack for the first time - it felt like racing again.

Q: That sounds that you’ve been able to work also on the set-up…

NR: Yes.

Q: How difficult is it when you come out of a corner to get the power down to avoid wheel spin?

NR: It was quite tricky on some occasions in the afternoon when the tyres got warm - I had wheel spin up in fifth gear sometimes on the straights! So yes, it’s tricky.

Q: You will race with the number six on your car this year. Do you like the fact that you can run with ‘your’ number now?

NR: Yes, I like it. I can identify with the number I have chosen. It’s nice that you can race with your ‘lucky’ number. I even have it on my helmet now.