Nico Rosberg says Mercedes underestimated the amount the Nurburgring would evolve
German lines up disappointing 11th for home race
By William Esler. Last Updated: 06/07/13 4:34pm
Nico Rosberg says Mercedes underestimated the amount the track would evolve after he was surprisingly knocked out during the second part of qualifying at the German GP.
The Silver Arrows opted not to send the German out for a final run at the Nurburgring in an effort to preserve tyres, but the gamble backfired as other drivers improved and the Silverstone victor slipped to 11th.
The result was a major blow for the 28-year-old who had looked the most likely to take the challenge for pole to Sebastian Vettel during final practice - a battle that team-mate Lewis Hamilton would win in the sister car.
"For sure the team underestimated so it didn't really work out," Rosberg told Sky Sports F1.
"Degradation-wise it is better. The new tyres didn't come to our advantage but hopefully the race pace is better. But from 11th I will think about that tomorrow.
"It's a big disappointment because I didn't see that coming. I thought it would be easy to be on the front-row so it is tough to digest.
Nor will Rosberg be able to gain much of an advantage from being able to start the race on the medium tyres with all four of the cars lining up directly in front of his Mercedes also deployed on the slower but more durable prime compounds.
"From eleventh, it's not going to be possible to do much, but I'll give it everything," he conceded.
Ross Brawn concurred that the team had made an error, but is hopeful having the choice of which tyre to start on can salvage a good result for Rosberg.
"It was just a misjudgement," the Mercedes Team Principal said.
"We had a cut-off time that we thought would be reasonably comfortable but the track simply got a lot quicker at the end and we hadn't anticipated it. He didn't have the greatest of laps anyway so that was adding to the frustration.
"But we didn't make the right call on that one, but we will have to see what benefit it brings in the race because Nico now has free tyre choice."