Nico Rosberg, Mercedes, Monte-Carlo, 2014

Stewards investigating Rosberg’s Mirabeau mistake

2014 Monaco Grand PrixPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Nico Rosberg, Mercedes, Monte-Carlo, 2014Nico Rosberg is being investigated by the stewards over his error at Mirabeau during his final qualifying lap for the Monaco Grand Prix.

Rosberg went into the escape road after appearing to lose control of his car at the corner.

That brought out yellow flags, forcing the drivers behind him to slow down. That included his team mate Lewis Hamilton whose previous time had been less than six hundredths of a second slower than Rosberg’s.

This article will be updated.

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93 comments on “Stewards investigating Rosberg’s Mirabeau mistake”

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  1. I thinks that’s reasonable, honnestly, knowing how FIA works, it would be no surprise Nico beeing penalised, for me it was a honest mistake, but under the pressure of Hamilton, and external facts, Nico will probably be penalised…

    1. Hmmm…if you go by ‘knowing how the FIA works’ I would have thought they would clear NR so that he keeps pole, as well as his chances to win the race, and keep the see-saw battle going longer into the season rather than risking yet another LH win and a runaway season for one driver in a dominant car.

  2. It wouldn’t be the first time this year that Hamilton has pressured Rosberg into making a mistake. Rosberg spun in Q3 in China, for example. He could easily have just blown it again.

    As for the reversing, well, I’ll be interested to see what the stewards have to say about that. I think even that was more likely muddle-headed than cynical.

  3. I don’t think Rosberg’s actions at any point were done deliberately to hamper anyone. However, the reversing itself, whilst not to hamper, may well have hampered, and that would make it just like any other penalty, intentional or not. It’s the same with backing up and holding up drivers.

  4. “Sorry Lewis, i was so hungry I wasn’t thinking straight.”

  5. I don’t think it was deliberate. By doing that Rosberg was not guarranteed of yellow flags. If I was doing it deliberately, I’d have clipped my front wing a bit into that barrier.

    And I don’t think stewards can read something from telemetry. You can fake it very nicely – who can distinguish if you braked a bit later due to error or deliberately? So I expect stewards taking no further action.

  6. I don’t see how him reversing makes any difference, it was still a yellow flag no matter what and that’s what ruined Hamilton’s and Ricciardo’s laps.

    It looked to me that he did indeed park it intentionally. That wavering he did with the steering wheel doesn’t look realistic at all and the driving line was well off to start with. And probably if the stewards agree, for a violation of that magnitude, it will be an exclusion from the quali.

  7. Since some question NR’s backing up as meaning a deliberate attempt to extend the yellow, are you sure that would have done it, or is it the case that just by virtue of being in that run-off spot the yellow was on. Would it be reality to expect for example the marshals to signal NR to stay where he was so they could remove the yellow quicker for the coming cars? Ie. if being further up the run-off area made a difference, why did they throw the yellow at all then since he was initially quite far off the track.

    I think NR made an honest mistake and was celebrating as he was because to him it was not his fault that they threw the yellow, when he was actually quite out of the way.

  8. That’s it !
    Now HAM will go nuts now, the rich boy robbed him a WDC, when according to HAM himself he deserves it more for being new rich and poor hungry.
    Talking about psychological games ROS apparently is no novice,
    but again to me seems to good to be truth all this Senna-Prost marketing of a parody to cover of once again uncompetitive f1 racing.
    Good laugh anyway, entertaining.

    1. …and by his words, the 1st black pilot

  9. It remains to be seen what the stewards make of it in their wisdom. In the meantime, I think Nico’s biggest tactical error was in not apologising to Lewis as soon as he got out of the car. Even if it was all genuine mistake, common decency demands that Nico recognise that his team mate’s chance at pole was ruined by his error. Oh wait, I was forgetting: decency isn’t common anymore, is it?

  10. Let’s face it, while we can all sit here and be experts in the armchair Grand Prix, I don’t think anyone commenting has driven a race car, let alone an F1 car. So we’re none of us qualified to analyse the subtleties of what a GP driver is doing behind the wheel.

    Yes, sawing at the wheel isn’t, according to conventional wisdom, a normal thing to do. But who knows. Maybe he was trying to introduce some lateral motion to help slow down the car. Maybe he was trying to induce oversteer to get the car turned in. Maybe he was trying to feel out the grip at the front end to decide whether or not he was able to make the corner before backing out and taking the escape road. Maybe he was reacting to some subtle feedback which you’d only understand if you had your hands on the steering wheel at racing speeds. Or maybe he really was trying to induce a mistake to deliberately hold up those behind him. We simply can’t say conclusively because we aren’t F1 drivers. Even Derek Warwick will have no real idea what it’s like to drive these cars, though he’s undeniably better qualified than any of us to pass judgement. And of course he can absolutely be relied upon to judge the situation fairly.

    Regardless, what an intense and exciting season this is shaping up to be.

  11. Now Nico has resorted to Kangaroo tactics of hiding into the porch (Mirabeau) only to pip out to see how he messed up every other person on the grid. That’s not the mark of a champion!!

  12. He reversed but it still would have been a yellow flag regardless of whether he did or not.

    1. Unless there are specific regs against reversing back up the escape road, I can’t see why it would be a problem. He didn’t go back onto the track until the track was clear, so I don’t see what the problem would be.

      1. The problem is that by reversing down the escape road, he was putting others in danger because there were other drivers on hot laps too and if they made a similar mistake, where would they go? Into him?

        1. This is why they have yellow flags – if a driver has gone off, they wave flags to tell the other drivers to slow down so they don’t make a mistake and hit the car sitting on the runoff area. When they have double waved yellows the cars on track are expected to slow right down or even stop.

          I’m surprised this hasn’t come up before.

  13. I don’t see that anyone could say in a proven way his action to cause a yellow was deliberate. I don’t believe he did.

    The issue is how he rejoined the track.

    There is no rule with regards to reversing back on track.

    Cars may not reverse in the pit lane, but must be equipped with a reverse gear so they are able ‘to reverse at any time during the event’ so technically Nico did not break any rule there.

    However, a driver may only rejoin the track when it is deemed safe by the race director.

    Depending on how Charlie sees that I guess will depend on the result of the investigation.

    If guilty, the penalty is a grid drop.

  14. Rosberg made a mistake – and went to espace road.
    he reversed on the escape road – I believe this is why he is being investigate.
    from what I know you can not reverse an f1 car on the race track, but is it ok on an escape road? and also does if matter if under yellow flag?
    some people think what Rosberg did was deliberate and comment of rosberg’s “instinctive steering of the car to a straight path after breaking to late” as some weird fake weaving. cmon people, grow up, if Rosberg wanted to be like that he would have hit the wall or locked up to nearly hit the wall, instead of running down an escape road where a yellow flag was not guaranteed. I was surprised a yellow flag came out at all – unless it came out when he was reversing – which again shows the initial error was not on purpose.

    1. The recovering driver is allowed to reverse if it’s safe to do so. Which it was because it was covered by yellow flags and he only rejoined the track once it was clear. As far as I can see he recovered the car pretty much according to procedure. There’s some debate as to whether or not driving to the far end of the escape road and parking it would have cleared the yellow flag, but it’s all speculation and either way, there’s no regulatory obligation for him to do so, so no reason why he would receive a penalty for it. But who knows, the stewards will have a better understanding than any of us.

  15. According to Anthony Davidson on Sky, Hamilton was behind Rosberg’s pole time when he arrived at Mirabeau, so it’s not certain it was the “pole lap” LH claimed it was in the interviews. But then we’ll never know, will we? Either way, the incident itself seemed to me like Rosberg just overcooked it. Anthony Davidson said – and I agree – that had Rosberg wanted to make sure to bring out the yellows, he’d have (ever so gently) stuffed it in the barrier, or parked the car at the beginning of the escape road. From what we could initially see, he seemed to carry on further down the escape road, bringing him farther from the point where he’d be an obstruction. That far, I couldn’t see any clear signs of foul play.

    But the reversing back towards the track wasn’t initially shown – that only came to light a little later. To me, that move was stupid, and pointless. It may not have made any difference in the end – I’m not sure the marshals are allowed to retract the yellows when there’s a car on the escape road, however far down that road it is sat. But even so, he shouldn’t have started reversing.

    Possible outcomes? Well, it might well end up as a “no further action”, if it turns out that the reversing didn’t actually make any difference to the yellow flag period. He could end up with a reprimand (or whatever’s this year’s equivalent) for the needless reversing. I doubt it will be anything more severe – for that, they’d need to find solid evidence of the initial incident itself being deliberate, and barring any pit-to-car radio instructions to that effect, I can’t really see that kind of evidence turning up. This was not a simple “park it at Rascasse” job… :-)

  16. Neil (@neilosjames)
    24th May 2014, 16:53

    It’s right that it’s being investigated – if deliberate (can’t see it) we’ll know, and if it was a mistake (can see it), we’ll know.

    Removes doubt from both sides.

  17. REALLY? He didnt know he started his final lap before Hamilton so he says.

    Anyone with a little bit of knowledge from formula one can see on the video
    that he started shaking his steering wheel on purpuose way before the braking
    point and to put it in reverse to go back on the track is a joke.

  18. Graeme Marshall
    24th May 2014, 17:34

    There are any amount of “unintentional” or ill judged actions in F1 that get penalised, unsafe release in the pits being the most obvious. The only gear NR should have been in was neutral, to select reverse was intentional and I suspect the act of a cheat

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