Mercedes driver leads drivers' championship after flawless victory in Monte Carlo
Monte Carlo (Monaco): Nico Rosberg turned his controversial pole position on Saturday into a faultless victory yesterday when his Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton lost both his vision and his lead in the drivers' championship.
Nico Rosberg celebrates his Monaco Grand Prix win in Monte Carlo yesterday. Pic/AFP
As mounting attention on their rivalry created a tense atmosphere around the Mercedes team, Rosberg delivered a flawless demonstration of speed, race-craft and good manners to claim a second successive triumph in the Monaco Grand Prix.
His victory enabled him to regain momentum in the title race and, significantly after a difficult weekend, left Hamilton struggling in his wake, on and off the circuit.
Having set himself the goal of claiming his maiden pole and a second victory on the streets of the Mediterranean principality, Hamilton completed his day by not only fending off charging Daniel Ricciardo, of Red Bull, to keep second place, but also ducking probing questions in a post-race news conference.
To one reporter, who asked about his suggestion on Saturday that he may copy Ayrton Senna's actions to take revenge after Rosberg's off-circuit excursion on his final qualifying lap, Hamilton replied by saying 'it was just a joke.'
He also had to explain how Rosberg's father Keke, the 'original flying Finn' who won the 1983 Monaco Grand Prix after taking the world title the previous year by winning a single race, had been the inspiration for his comments, widely published on Friday.
Ricciardo finished third ahead of Fernando Alonso of Ferrari in a much closer finish than expected after some dirt had crept into Hamilton's left eye 14 laps from the finish and ruined his hopes of catching Rosberg to fight for victory.
It was Rosberg's second consecutive triumph in his home event, his second win of the 2014 season and the fifth win of his career.
Alonso finished fourth and Jenson Button who finished sixth for McLaren. Felipe Massa came home seventh for Williams, Jules Bianchi was eighth for Marussia ahead of fellow-Frenchman Romain Grosjean of Lotus and Magnussen finished 10th.
The number of career wins registered by Nico Rosberg