World championship leader Nico Rosberg said that his Mercedes team would sit down on Thursday night and clear the air between him and Lewis Hamilton after their battle in Bahrain.
Hamilton held off his clearly quicker team-mate over the final few laps to win his second race in a row after a ding-dong duel, during which Rosberg complained over the radio, “That’s not on”.
Rosberg admitted to reporters on Thursday that it had “taken a while” to get over coming second to Hamilton but added he was fully focused on Shanghai this weekend “because I know I can win here”.
“It was an enjoyable fight, during the race anyway,” added Rosberg, who scored his maiden victory in China two years ago.
Rosberg’s outburst came after the pair came “so close I couldn’t have got my hand between the two wheels,” he claimed on Thursday.
But he added they would iron out any differences during an evening team meeting.
“It’s completely normal that, as a team, when there are races when a lot has happened that you’re going to go and sit down and discuss,” he said.
“That’s very, very important to move forward. And we will do that and we will do that today.
“We will make sure everyone knows the different opinions, we will review to be able to put it completely behind us. It’s natural and needs to happen to move forward and be even stronger.”
Rosberg and Hamilton are no strangers to on-track battles, going back to their karting days as teenagers.
“There have been so many occasions,” said the German.
“Even when we were 12 or 13 years old. And there have been ‘intense’ discussions afterwards.
“But we always with the necessary respect and then move on afterwards.”
Hamilton, the victor in Bahrain, and in Malaysia the previous race, said Thursday that it been “quite an exciting race” and he had sat down with his family last weekend and watched it again on video.
“It was a bit more like a go-kart race. A great race, I hope there are more races like that during the year,” said the
Briton. “You don’t see it too often.”
But Hamilton cautioned that people shouldn’t think that everything was now right with the new-look Formula One after one exciting race, which followed two Mercedes parades in Australia and Malaysia.
“That’s the thing in this sport. You have one good day and it changes opinion. It does show that there are some good things about, but there are still some things to improve.”