Mercedes has admitted that brake problems were to blame for Nico Rosberg losing second place in the Bahrain GP to Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen with just two laps to go, and that Lewis Hamilton also suffered issues late on too.
Rosberg overshot Turn 1 with just two laps remaining, which allowed Raikkonen to steal the runner-up spot and consign Rosberg to his second third-place finish of the season.
“It was a disappointing end to the race,” admitted Rosberg. “To lose the second place two laps from the end just feels a bit unnecessary, to have a brake problem near the end. The brake pedal just went straight down; there was no resistance any more.
“I still had brakes, but the pedal just went down, so I just went straight on. I think I could have held off Kimi for sure without the problem.
“It was an enjoyable race at the beginning, exciting to pass those red cars like that, and then chasing down Lewis, but we were at a very similar pace, so there was nothing to do. So not the best weekend.”
Hamilton also hit trouble
Race winner Lewis Hamilton also suffered a similar scare in the closing stages, but it didn’t affect him in the same way as he had the time to rectify the problem and still cruise to victory.
“It basically goes into fault mode, so the pedal goes from being hard to being long,” he explained. “And normally when it goes long it’s because you’ve had a brake failure, so for a moment you’re not sure what’s going on.
“I reacted really quickly and made a switch change, and it came back. I reset the brake-by-wire, basically.”