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Rosberg denies two-race ban report

Nico Rosberg’s assistant, and Formula 1, have denied that the 2016 world champion was ‘banned’ from attending the Baku and Spanish grands prix.

We reported at the weekend that the German was absent from Azerbaijan after having his permanent world champion paddock and grid ‘pass’ confiscated by Liberty Media.

Georg Nolte, Rosberg’s assistant, said: “It’s not true.

“There was a brief discussion in China with the F1 accreditation officer and that was the end of it.”

Nolte explained that TV pundit Rosberg actually skipped Baku, and the race in Barcelona in two weeks, to prepare for his new green technologies festival called Greentech.

However, he admitted that Rosberg immediately apologised to Formula One Management for giving his F1 pass to a photographer friend in China recently.

“At the last minute, I wanted to give a friend the opportunity to go to the grid so I gave him my pass,” he confirmed to DPA news agency.

Formula 1’s communications department called reports of a two-race ban for Rosberg “fake news”.

“Nico Rosberg misused his pass in China, apologised immediately and will get his pass back at the next race he’s set to come to -– Monaco. No ban!” the department said.

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