Nico Rosberg is hoping that the final race before F1's summer break can not only produce a better result than last year but also provide a little light in a week filled with sadness.
Along with many of his rivals, the German was present at Jules Bianchi's funeral in Nice, and journeys to the Hungaroring with memories of the late Frenchman fresh in his mind. Bianchi's death may be far removed from the accident that caused it, but the service stirred up sentiments that caused all present to pause and reflect.
“It has been a very emotional week,” Rosberg admitted, “The drivers paid our final respects to Jules and said farewell. He was a very talented driver and a good guy. My thoughts in these days are with his family and close friends. Everyone will be sharing the same feelings in the paddock this week, but we must race on and race hard for Jules - as he would have wanted to be doing himself.”
Rosberg and Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton head to Budapest locked in another two-way battle for the F1 world title, and the German admits that he is out to avenge the controversial defeat he suffered in a battle for third place last season, when Hamilton resisted team orders to move aside. The Briton's actions subsequently prompted the clash between the two team-mates in Belgium as the season resumed in late August.
“[Hungary]'s the final race before the team gets a well-earned break and I'll be pushing as always to give everyone something positive to take into their holidays,” Rosberg claimed, “It's a tough track on the driver - narrow, very twisty and usually very hot – [but] it's one of those circuits where you can really show your skill and that makes it a good challenge.
“The race here last year wasn't ideal for me in the end, but it's a proper circuit, in a beautiful city, with big crowds always filling the grandstands, so I'm looking forward to it and hoping bring home a stronger result this time around.”
With no German Grand Prix, Hamilton's win last time out at Silverstone took his advantage back to 17 points, but the season is only just reaching its midway point, with Hungary the first of ten remaining rounds.