Michael Schumacher and Nico Rosberg finished the German Grand Prix in seventh and tenth places respectively today.
Michael made three pit stops this afternoon on laps 14, 36 and 52, running option/option/prime/option. Nico also ran a three-stop strategy, stopping on laps 12, 32 and 50 and choosing prime/option/option/option. With fresh tyres in the final laps, Michael set the team’s second fastest lap in three races in 1:18.725.
There are nicer ways to finish a home race than falling back from third to seventh place. I squeezed everything I could out of the car but, unfortunately, that’s everything we could manage today. It’s a pity because I would have loved to have given something more to all our Mercedes-Benz colleagues who were supporting us today. Before this weekend, we expected to be racing between P5 and P7, and of course fifth place would have been the better option, but seventh was our maximum in these circumstances. I got a decent start and the short battle with Sebastian was fun. After that, unfortunately, there weren’t too many highlights, apart from setting the fastest lap, perhaps. However, we couldn’t maintain that pace for very long. Now we have to look forwards and do our maximum at the next race.
It feels ok to have scored one point today after such a bad qualifying yesterday and starting right at the back. We had a good strategy and I had great fun out there at times overtaking so many people to move from 21st to 10th place. Some of the guys I had to overtake a couple of times and there were some nice manoeuvres. Thanks to our fans here in Hockenheim for their fantastic support, even though the weekend didn’t really run to plan. Now I look forward to Budapest in just seven days and hope for a better weekend, and we will keep working very hard towards this.
We ran the race as well as we could today, in the knowledge that we would have to make three pit stops. Some of our rivals on two-stop strategies faded towards the end but the drop-off was not sufficient for our drivers to be able to take advantage on fresher tyres. Michael and Nico put in consistent performances, pulled off good overtaking moves and we delivered six clean pit stops. Our strategy enabled Nico to climb eleven positions from his starting place, while Michael finished in seventh place for the second time in two weeks. We made the right decisions this afternoon but, after 67 laps, Michael found himself 29 seconds behind the winner. That shows we need to find more pace from the car.
Of course it is not pleasant starting third and coming home seventh. We were convinced that a three-stop strategy would be the fastest race for us, and we will evaluate whether a two-stop strategy could have brought us more. In any case, a podium was out of reach for us today and we certainly need further improvements. Nico put in a great drive, gaining 11 places from 21st to 10th. Like in Silverstone, our best-placed car came home roughly 30 seconds behind the winner, so we are missing about half a second per lap. We are now looking forward to doing a better job next weekend at the Hungarian Grand Prix.
Source: Mercedes AMG