Lewis Hamilton looked relaxed and Nico Rosberg was contrite as the warring Mercedes drivers addressed the Formula One media for the first time since departing Spa.

In front of a crammed press conference room at Monza ahead of this weekend's Italian Grand Prix, all eyes were unsurprisingly trained on the duelling duo. Rosberg was handed a six-figure fine by the team for colliding with Hamilton on lap two of the Belgian Grand Prix which, in the words of Williams' Felipe Massa, "destroyed" the Briton's race.

The upside for Rosberg is he came away from Spa with a 29-point lead over Hamilton with just seven races remaining. The downside has been the fact he was forced to admit he was in the wrong, the criticism he faced from his team bosses and the backlash in general from many observers.

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Asked as to what )had persuaded him to apologise, after insisting fiercely on Sunday in Belgium and in his video blog the day after that what transpired was "a racing incident", Rosberg said: "Just with time. I took the week to think about it, had a look at it and discussed it with the team last Friday, and in the end decided it was me who should take responsibility for it. It definitely was a decision that came from me after hearing people's opinions and having looked at it myself again.

"I felt it was my responsibility. I definitely was not proud of the way it went because in general I really want to contribute to 'my sport'."

Rosberg now accepts motorsport's No.1 rule - do not crash into your team-mate. "It's been very clear from the beginning we must not have contact between us," added Rosberg.

From Hamilton's perspective, "trust' in Rosberg seemingly no longer exists. For all his general confidence throughout the press conference, the 29-year-old suggested the situation between himself and Rosberg had changed, albeit far from irretrievably broken given their prior friendship.

"Trust is a big word and it's not something I would particularly apply to racing on the track," said Hamilton. "Naturally, me and Nico have been racing for a long time and I think we set a good foundation a long, long time ago, so that's what we work from. It's important to really try to move forward, and that's what I'm focusing on."