Despite failing to mount a challenge in the United States GP, Nico Rosberg insists he was pushing “flat out” all the way to the chequered flag.
The German started Sunday’s 56-lap grand prix from second on the grid but lost out to Daniel Ricciardo off the line.
While it appeared for much of the grand prix that Rosberg would finish P3 behind Lewis Hamilton and Ricciardo, a fortuitous Virtual Safety Car played into his hands.
But even when Rosberg was running P2 behind Hamilton, he was unable to make any serious inroads into his team-mate’s lead and finished second on that day.
That, though, is all the 31-year-old needs in the remaining races to wrap up his first World title.
“I lost out a bit at the start unfortunately and then gave it everything to come back,” he said.
“Second place is okay as it was damage limitation today of course.
“I wanted to win here in America, that would have been awesome, but it wasn’t to be.
“Next time maybe.”
Asked if he was playing it safe given his position in the standings, Rosberg replied: “Definitely not, I was going for it flat out all the way to the end.”
Rosberg heads to Mexico, round 19 of the 21-race season, 26 points ahead of Hamilton.