Nico Rosberg has only himself to blame for failing to take the fight to Lewis Hamilton at Spa as he "completely messed up" at the start.
At the first grand prix where F1's new regulations limit the pitwall's influence on the start was felt, the German made a sluggish getwaway.
Slow off the line, he dropped from second on the grid to fifth at the first corner which meant he spent the opening stint of the race trying to make up ground.
Once up to second, he was able to close the gap to Hamilton only for the Brit to respond to the threat.
The duo raced to the chequered flag in formation with Rosberg crossing the line two seconds behind his team-mate.
"I completely messed up the start," he conceded.
"Lewis did a great job and deserved the win. I tried to challenge him but not enough."
Rosberg won't be hanging around to celebrate his team-mate's win as his wife Vivian is expecting their first child.
He added: "I am rushing off after this because we are expecting our first child any moment.
"An exciting time and I look forward to next week."
With eight races remaining in the season Rosberg is now points behind his Mercedes team-mate in the title race.