Nico Rosberg held off Lewis Hamilton to claim his fifth victory of the season at the Brazilian Grand Prix on Sunday. The German driver completed a clean sweep of all three practice sessions, qualifying and the 71-lap race at Interlagos, but only after Hamilton spun off the track while pushing hard for the lead ahead of his second pit stop. That error, on lap 28 at Turn 4, came as Hamilton tried to use pit strategy to get ahead of his team-mate. Staying out two laps longer, he set the race’s fastest lap on the first but spun on the second. As a result, he rejoined seven seconds behind his title rival.
Hamilton was right on Rosberg’s tail again after both drivers made their third and final stops but while the last 20 laps saw the two Silver Arrows in close company, he was not able to get close enough to try and overtake. Of course, double points are on offer in Abu Dhabi on November 23 and a repeat of this result will still be enough for Hamilton to take his second world title.
Lewis Hamilton admitted he was at fault for the spin which saw him lose vital time in his pursuit of Nico Rosberg during the Brazilian Grand Prix. Yet Rosberg’s fifth win of the season, in a race which has brought a number of hectic title deciders in recent years, but now stands in the shadow of F1’s first-ever double points finale, means that his chances suddenly seem a little rosier.
Hamilton remains the favourite but it was the Briton who made the race’s crucial error. More of the same in a fortnight’s time might, perhaps, have much greater consequences for him, particularly if Rosberg enjoys another trouble-free weekend.