Mercedes should not start ‘blaming each other’ for poor performance, warns Nico Rosberg

Mercedes: What’s gone wrong at the F1 and can they recover?

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Nico Rosberg has warned Mercedes should not start blaming each other for their issues as the team continue to lack performance. Lewis Hamilton’s former title rival claimed the team were in a ‘horrible situation’ as they look for solutions to their problems.

However, he warned the ‘spiral downwards’ can happen ‘very quickly’ and pushed team principal, Toto Wolff to keep people together despite the crisis. Hamilton and George Russell were both knocked out in Q2 in yesterday’s qualifying session.

It’s the Silver Arrows worst qualifying performance since 2012 and leaves the team with a lot of work to do to challenge for points and podiums this weekend. Speaking to Sky Sports F1, Rosberg said: “I can guarantee you that no one at Mercedes enjoys being two seconds off the pace and being out in Q2 with not a single chance to be somewhere at the front.

“That’s quite a horrible situation to be in for them who are so used to success. It’s a tough one to keep the morale high, to keep the motivation for everybody and also to not start blaming each other, ‘that’s your fault, that’s your fault’.

“It can happen very quickly that you spiral downwards. But there Toto obviously is one of the best team leaders that we have ever seen in the sport. He is very, very strong in keeping people together and motivated.

“Of course, he will have outbursts of angriness as we have maybe seen. But I still believe he is the right guy to keep such a team going in such a difficult situation.”

Rosberg was only quick enough for 11th after his first runs in Q2 with Hamilton only 13th. The team were expecting to have a second chance to get out of the dropzone but Carlos Sainz crashed at the end of the lap, bringing out the red flags.

A rain shower descended moments later which made it impossible for anyone to go faster when the session eventually resumed.

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Hamilton claimed the team ‘underperformed’ in qualifying and also warned working his way through the field in today’s sprint race would be ‘difficult’. Mercedes trackside engineering director Andrew Shovlin alps agreed, claiming the rest of the weekend will be a ‘challenge;’.

He said: “A difficult couple of sessions today; we have a car that doesn’t generate tyre temperature sufficiently well and that has cost us today. We were moving towards a schedule of longer runs but with the red flags we couldn’t get the laps that we needed and once the rain came, we were left in 11th and 13th with no chance to improve.

“This is not a great track for overtaking so we expect the rest of the weekend to be a challenge but we have shown that our race pace is better than our single lap and with both the sprint and the main race we have longer than normal to try and recover.”

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