Mercedes has revealed that Australian Grand Prix winner Nico Rosberg managed to survive a potentially critical brake problem by adapting his driving style around Melbourne’s Albert Park.
The German picked up a piece of debris in the front-right brake duct of his W07 on lap 30 of the 57-lap season-opening contest, which resulted in a sudden surge in brake caliper temperature.
In the wake of the FIA’s fresh ban on radio communications, Mercedes could not warn his driver and almost called him into retirement despite Rosberg having taken the lead after Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel had to make an extra stop.
Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff said after the race that “the alarm would come up” on Rosberg’s dashboard to let him know there was an issue. In its latest ‘Silver Arrows Show’ video on YouTube, Mercedes explains how the 30-year-old was able to nurse his car home to secure his 15th career victory.
“Nico could manage this problem from the cockpit in two ways, first he adapted his driving style to do more lift and coast and use the air resistance to slow the car at the end of the straights without losing too much time.
“He also adjusted the brake balance rearwards to reduce the duty on the front brakes. Despite the problem reaching almost critical levels, the temperatures then stabilised.
“Despite the problem, the team decided to keep Nico out on track and he was able to take the chequered flag and that all-important first win of the season.”
The full ‘Silver Arrows Show’ video can be found below: