The Unpleasant Reason Why Rosberg was Anxious to See Max Verstappen in His Rear-View Mirrors

Published 11/07/2021, 6:38 AM EST
Formula One F1 – Mexico Grand Prix – Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, Mexico City, Mexico – November 6, 2021 Red Bull’s Max Verstappen during practice REUTERS/Andres Stapff


Nico Rosberg still remains the last driver to beat lewis Hamilton in a straight championship fight. The 2016 world champion retired from the sport and after winning the title from his then-teammate Lewis. But interestingly, he mentioned it was not Hamilton that made him nervous when he saw his rear-view mirrors. The German stated it was Red Bull driver Max Verstappen that made him nervous while defending.

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” That is the easiest question in the world, Max Verstappen. Even though also Daniel Ricciardo actually but Max Verstappen,” said the 2016 world champion.

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WATCH STORY: Mad Max: Verstappen’s Angriest Rants on Team Radio

Nico Rosberg explains why he feared Max Verstappen

In his Q/A for his YouTube Channel, Rosberg explained why he was so scared to defend against MaxHe pointed out the two incidents in the Mexican GP in 2016 where he was defending from the Dutchman.

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – NOVEMBER 24: World Drivers Championship contender Nico Rosberg of Germany and Mercedes GP during a press conference with Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP during previews for the Abu Dhabi Formula One Grand Prix at Yas Marina Circuit on November 24, 2016, in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Lars Baron/Getty Images)

“Coming here to Mexico. Oh my goodness, I was fighting for the championship, and somehow miraculously, even though I was due to be sixth in qualifying because I was feeling so uncomfortable out there. I actually managed to nail the last possible lap and jumped to second on the grid.

And then I had Max Verstappen next to me or behind me and we had two comings together. And I had to kind of finish second to keep my championship hopes alive or third in the worst case. At the start, Max just braked way too late and locked up the inside understeered right into me knocked my tires. 

I decided to just drive over the grass to keep ahead of him and it worked out. And later on in the race, he was behind me. He threw himself down the inside on Turn 4 and he just went flying straight on and missed his braking point so I was lucky there. But man, it was so uncomfortable to have Max behind because he’s the one who took most risk.” explained Rosberg.

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Former world champion still backing Hamilton over Verstappen

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Nico Rosberg stated that despite Verstappen leading the championship with 5 races to go, he is still backing the 7-time world champion. The German stated that the level for this season has been crazy and stated that Lewis’s experience will prevail at the end.

Formula One F1 – United States Grand Prix – Circuit of the Americas, Austin, Texas, U.S. – October 24, 2021 Red Bull’s Max Verstappen celebrates on the podium after winning the race with second place Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton REUTERS/Brian Snyder TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

“Somehow I would still tend lean towards to Lewis. Through experience, and because he normally always wins in the end,said Rosberg.

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Rosberg probably knows Hamilton the best. He continued by mentioning how tough it was to beat his former Mercedes teammate in a championship.

Who will come out on top – Lewis or Max? Let us know.

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Devang Chauhan

584 articles

Devang Chauhan is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Having completed his graduation in Journalism and Mass Communication, he has a keen eye for writing engaging and detailed articles on F1. Previously a writer for Sports Social's 'Chase Your Sport' Magazine, Devang has been an ardent follower of the sport for over a decade and has attended two editions of the Indian Grand Prix.

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