Mercedes AMG Petronas team boss Toto Wolff saluted Nico Rosberg following his victory in Sunday’s Bahrain Grand Prix.
The German driver made it back-to-back wins with his 16th career victory at the Bahrain International Circuit. It was also his fifth win in succession following three victories at the back end of last season.
Nico’s on a roll right now with five race wins in a row and he didn’t put a foot wrongToto Wolff
Rosberg enjoyed a comfortable victory while Brackley team-mate Lewis Hamilton overcame a first-lap collision to finish third. World champion Hamilton started on pole position but made a slow start and then had a clash with Williams driver Valtteri Bottas.
Hamilton recovered but was unable to stop Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen from taking second place. Rosberg’s win in a row saw him open up a 17-point lead in the championship.
Wolff said: “Nico’s on a roll right now, with five race wins in a row, and he didn’t put a foot wrong, a clean start, clean turn one and then the race was his to control.
“He was quick when he needed to be, without taking any unnecessary risks, and deserved another great win.
On Lewis’ side, like in Melbourne he found himself seventh on the first lap, an, again, he used the fighting spirit we all know to get back to the podium. He got a poor getaway again.
“After that, he got hit by [Valtteri] Bottas at the first corner which damaged the car pretty badly on the front wing and the floor. From then on, it was about damage limitation and trying to get back through the field, even with a damaged car.”
Rosberg said: “The start was definitely the key to my win and that was a really great moment as it was an area that we put a lot effort into before the race.
“Strategy-wise we had to play it safe, it maybe wasn’t the quickest option but we had to cover the risk of a safety car. It was an almost perfect weekend for me – only qualifying could have been a fraction better.
“What a great start to the season, now I look forward to China, where I won my first ever Grand Prix, so I have plenty of positive energy heading there.”
Hamilton added: “I didn’t get a good start but it actually wasn’t as bad as the last one. They were completely different incidents but this time I just didn’t get away as well as I needed to and that was down to me.
“I managed to climb back up there and at get some points, so again it was good damage limitation. I could easily have not finished the race, so I’m glad it wasn’t more points dropped.”