Despite Nico Rosberg enjoying a 19-point lead in the Drivers' Championship, Mercedes’ Niki Lauda has insisted the German is not playing it safe, using his similar lap times to Lewis Hamilton as proof.
Rosberg will start the Brazilian Grand Prix in second after Hamilton edged him out for pole position by just 0.102s, and while he may only need two P2s in the remaining races, Lauda said the German is smart enough not to take it easy.
"Lewis does not have any pressure because he can attack all the way as he has nothing to lose," the F1 legend told Sky Sports F1.
— MERCEDES AMG F1 (@MercedesAMGF1) November 12, 2016
"With 19 points in hand, you could put yourself under pressure, which would restrict you in your driving.
"You should not do that and take it like any other race, which Nico is doing… As you can see, he is doing the same lap time as Lewis."
Reflecting on Saturday’s action, Rosberg couldn’t help but feel disappointed he wasn’t able to snatch pole from his team-mate.
"It was very close and that is when it is disappointing because you think 'one tenth maybe I could have pulled out a tenth there or wherever' so that is never ideal. But that is the way it is," he concluded.
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