Nico Rosberg takes aim at Lance Stroll ‘excuse’ after ‘ridiculous’ Qatar GP claim

Thomas Maher
Aston Martin driver Lance Stroll.

Aston Martin driver Lance Stroll adjusts his earplugs as he prepares for the start of the 2023 Dutch Grand Prix at Zandvoort.

Nico Rosberg gave Lance Stroll’s complaints about his track limits penalties short shrift following the Qatar Grand Prix.

Stroll went home empty-handed from the Qatar Grand Prix, having finished ninth on the road at the chequered flag.

However, the Canadian was shuffled back out of the points due to a time penalty he picked up for exceeding track limits – limits that had been tightened up following the FIA responding to Pirelli’s concerns over their tyres going over the harsh Lusail kerbing.

Lance Stroll lashes out at strict track limits

With Stroll one of many drivers to pick up a time penalty, the Aston Martin driver was annoyed as he spoke to the media after finishing the race only to have his points taken away due to being shuffled back in the order.

“It’s ridiculous,” he said.

“I mean, these temperatures… everything goes blurry. The last 25-30 laps were just blurry in the high-speed corners, with blood pressure dropping, and just passing out basically in the car in the high-speed corners with high G-forces.

“Then the kerbs were painted because they were worried about punctures with these high-loaded G-force corners and the tyres, and they painted the kerbs to make the track even narrower.

“So you’re relying just on your visual reference to the outside of the track and what that is. So you can’t really see anything because you’re just fading as you’re going through those corners.” recommends

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Nico Rosberg: It’s not really an excuse

2016 F1 World Champion Nico Rosberg was not impressed by Stroll’s explanation for exceeding the track limits on so many occasions, pointing out that other drivers had managed to cope with the track changes just fine.

“I think it was a decent race perhaps, for him but still an extreme way of stating it that he says the last 25 laps he’s almost passing out in those high-speed corners,” Rosberg told Sky F1.

“I mean, I believe him that is just crazy, crazy difficult out there.

“But, nevertheless, all the other drivers managed to do without penalties – or many of them – especially the best ones out there today.

“So it’s not really an excuse, I think, to still have so many mistakes to get the penalties that he did.”

With Stroll one of many drivers to complain about the extreme heat conditions, revealing that he had been ‘passing out’ behind the wheel of his car, Rosberg revealed that he had taken part in a simulator test during his driving career to explore racing in such extreme conditions.

“In my day, we did a test with a doctor with a device,” he said.

“We did a simulation of a race like that in those temperatures and it was deemed that it was not a risk to one’s health.

“Of course, it was an extreme exhaustion. It was extremely difficult. So I wonder, I mean, they would need to analyse it. Certainly, it was borderline. They lost like three kilos, so six pounds of body weight in those one hour and 45 minutes that they were racing. That’s extreme, it’s like 5% of your body weight, which really really is so tough and it’s such a torture.

“So that’s something they’re gonna have to look at.”

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