F1 fluffs Paris tribute as Rosberg dashes Hamilton dream
Formula 1 season fizzles out as Mercedes pair secure another easy win in procession at Interlagos
With Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes already crowned champions, the Formula 1 season is in danger of fizzling out after Nico Rosberg rained on Hamilton's parade for a second successive race and won an uninspiring Grand Prix in Brazil.
Second to that, the main talking point about the sport has been a half-baked attempt to pay tribute to the victims of the Paris attacks.
Hamilton won his third world title at the US Grand Prix in October but his team mate Rosberg has been dominant since then, and won his second successive race on Sunday.
The German led from start to finish in a race that offered little in the way of drama. Hamilton finished where he started, in second, and was left still hankering after the triumph at the home of his hero Ayrton Senna that he so craves.
"Rosberg won the grand prix from pole position with a dominant performance that can only make you wonder where he was all season when Lewis Hamilton, his team-mate, was romping away with the world championship," says Kevin Eason of The Times.
"Rosberg brought the precision and focus, while Hamilton chased the dream that still eludes him."
Rosberg's recent dominance has been the subject of much speculation in recent weeks. And Andrew Benson of the BBC suggests it may be related to a change in the rules governing tyre pressures in August after some drivers experienced problems.
Whatever, the reason, Rosberg held off Hamilton with relative ease. "It was a result of numbing predictability in a sport lost in a digital world, in which the lack of empathy is never better demonstrated than by its rulers," adds Kevin Eason of the Times.
"The decision not to allow a minute's silence before the grand prix to focus on the Paris killings veered from crass insensitivity to farce."
Instead, the tribute was bolted onto a minute's silence already scheduled in aid of road safety. A placard hailing World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims took centre stage, while on the left of the line-up four drivers, including the only Frenchman on the grid, Romain Grosjean, quietly held a tricolore.
"A sport with a penchant for over-complication was at its befuddling worst in Brazil," says Daniel Johnson of the Daily Telegraph.
Earlier, during their parade, the drivers "gathered on the giant Mercedes truck...[and] wore black armbands while a French flag was draped on one side of the bus", says Johnson, adding: "That was it."