Mercedes boss Toto Wolff believes Nico Rosberg is still on the path of improving as a driver and the release of pressure of vying for the Formula 1 world title has enable him to develop his racing mettle.
The Mercedes driver is enjoying a run of rich form with five consecutive pole positions along with back-to-back race wins in Mexico and Brazil.
Wolff says he cannot give a confident answer to where Rosberg's improvements have come from over the final few races but does feel with the title fight over, having lost the F1 championship to Hamilton at the United States Grand Prix, the German has been able to make improvements.
“I think racing drivers are a different kind of species,” Wolff said. “I have no explanation for you. You could say that Lewis won it all, he has achieved his target. The adrenaline is maybe not as high as it was before and Nico is driving without pressure.
“I have said that he [Rosberg] was driving in anger and I am not sure I am right, it is just what I think. But I could be wrong. Nico is still developing as a racing driver and you can all those Turn 1 incidents had a pretty similar pattern.”
Mercedes also says Rosberg has changed his braking phase into corners and can now tolerate more rear slipping on corner entry to be more aggressive.
Over a single lap it is believed Rosberg has been able to make gains on Hamilton's strongest driving characteristics, which could be an answer to his outstanding qualifying performances.
Wolff feels both drivers will review their season and performances during the winter and has been impressed by the way each of his men has pushed one another which has ultimately helped the German manufacturer develop its car.
“Both of them will spend time over the winter reflecting what happened at the end,” Wolff said. “One important thing is you can see his class now. And we have always tried to say that Nico's class and performance is important to make Lewis perform as he did and to make the car faster and the team to progress, and Mexico and Brazil was a good example of that class.”