Rosberg trumping Hamilton further stokes the rivalry within Mercedes

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The battle is hotting up at Mercedes, and while Lewis Hamilton appeared to have the upper hand in Bahrain, in the wake of his Malaysian Grand Prix triumph, it was Nico Rosberg who stole the limelight by qualifying in pole position for the race at Sakhir

Red Bull’s reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel, the dominant force of the last four years, summed up the mood in the paddock on Saturday when he said that the silver cars are in a “different world”.

Indeed, with the dominant W05, Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton have traded wins so far in 2014, but in Bahrain it was the German-born championship leader who broke his British teammate’s grip on pole position.

After Rosberg was outclassed in Malaysia, many predicted that Hamilton’s superior one-lap speed would finally power him to his first world title since 2008.

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But Sir Jackie Stewart says that Rosberg cannot be ruled out.

“Nico has proved he can drive a little bit the way I drove the car, or Alain Prost drove the car, or Jim Clark did,” the great Scot told the Mirror newspaper.

“We are only in the third of 19 races and Nico is a real threat,” Stewart added.

Mercedes’ Niki Lauda also said that Bahrain proves that 2014 doesn’t yet belong to Hamilton.

“I have always said that we have two equal drivers,” the Austrian, a triple world champion like Stewart, is quoted by Auto Motor und Sport.

“In recent days it was claimed that Lewis is obviously stronger, so I’m pleased that now it is the other way around,” Lauda added. (GMM)

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