Rosberg retires as F1's best driver, Mercedes boss Wolff says

Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff says the 2016 season proves Nico Rosberg retires as "the best driver in Formula 1 today"

Rosberg retires as F1's best driver, Mercedes boss Wolff says

After finishing second to Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton in the 2014 and '15 title fights, Rosberg became world champion for the first time last Sunday in Abu Dhabi.

Is Rosberg a deserving champion?

However, just five days after winning the 2016 title, Rosberg stunned motorsport by announcing his immediate retirement.

While Hamilton's unreliability during the season was a major point of discussion, Wolff said Rosberg's final achievement proves his worth.

"The results show he won the world championship," Wolff said.

"He is the best driver in Formula 1 today and the points show that.

"The way I've perceived the last few races was that he was extremely professional and he did what was needed.

"He had an incredible winning streak at the beginning of the season [four races] to build the foundation and he just drove it home."

Rosberg graduated to F1 as the reigning GP2 champion in 2006 with Williams, spending his first four seasons with the team.

When Mercedes returned as a works team in 2010 after buying Brawn GP, it recruited Rosberg and Michael Schumacher, who came out of retirement.

Rosberg won the first of his 23 grands prix in China in 2012 and two more in '13, before Mercedes stamped its dominance on the new turbo-hybrid era.

"He leaves a huge legacy," Wolff said.

"First of all the way he has chosen to leave Formula 1 is something that is unheard of.

"It is something that all of us admire in a certain way, calling it a day when you are the best and at the top.

"He has been part of the development of the team since the very early days and such a strong team member.

"The team has developed because the balance is right between the drivers and the dynamics within the team.

"The balance is very important and Nico was a big contributor."

shares
comments
Nico Rosberg retires: Mercedes F1 team-mate Hamilton not surprised

Previous article

Nico Rosberg retires: Mercedes F1 team-mate Hamilton not surprised

Next article

Hamilton's future Mercedes F1 team-mate has to ‘stand the heat’

Hamilton's future Mercedes F1 team-mate has to ‘stand the heat’
Load comments
Hamilton at 100 wins: In his adversaries’ words Plus

Hamilton at 100 wins: In his adversaries’ words

Some 18 drivers have finished runner-up to Lewis Hamilton on his way to 100 wins. Three of those recall their battles with Formula 1’s centurion and give their personal insights into the seven-time world champion on his rise to unchartered territory

Russian Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Russian Grand Prix Driver Ratings

The 2021 Russian GP was decided by late-arriving rain that allowed some to climb and caused others to plummet. But the events which played out beforehand are equally significant when considering the all-important driver ratings

How Mercedes made the “blind faith” call that won Hamilton his 100 milestone at Sochi Plus

How Mercedes made the “blind faith” call that won Hamilton his 100 milestone at Sochi

Until rain turned the Russian Grand Prix on its head in the closing stages, Lando Norris was set to convert his first Formula 1 pole position into a maiden win. But having recovered well from being shuffled back at the start, Hamilton and his Mercedes team called the changing conditions spot-on for a landmark 100th F1 victory

Why momentum is again behind Australia’s aces Plus

Why momentum is again behind Australia’s aces

At the Italian Grand Prix Daniel Ricciardo turned around a troubled F1 season and, in F2, Oscar Piastri demonstrated once again that he is a potential star of the future. BEN EDWARDS weighs up the prospects of F1 having two Australian stars

Formula 1
Sep 26, 2021
The tough balancing act facing Schumacher’s Netflix film producers Plus

The tough balancing act facing Schumacher’s Netflix film producers

Michael Schumacher is the latest sporting superstar to get the ‘Netflix treatment’, with a special documentary film airing on the US streaming giant’s platform this month. DAMIEN SMITH has the inside track on how the filmmakers gained access to tell the human story behind one of Formula 1’s most publicity-shy champions - while the man himself, for obvious reasons, is in absentia… 

Formula 1
Sep 25, 2021
The times that suggest Verstappen should be confident of F1 Russian GP recovery Plus

The times that suggest Verstappen should be confident of F1 Russian GP recovery

For the second race in a row, Mercedes has ended the first day of track action on top. It’s in a commanding position at the Russian Grand Prix once again – this time largely thanks to Max Verstappen’s upcoming engine-change grid penalty. But there’s plenty to suggest all hope is not lost for the championship leader at Sochi

Formula 1
Sep 24, 2021
The ‘backwards step’ that is the right move for Formula 1 Plus

The ‘backwards step’ that is the right move for Formula 1

OPINION: With its days apparently numbered, the MGU-H looks set to be dropped from Formula 1’s future engine rules in order to entice new manufacturers in. While it may appear a change of direction, the benefits for teams and fans could make the decision a worthwhile call

Formula 1
Sep 23, 2021
The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots Plus

The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots

Team Lotus ceased to exist in 1994 - and yet various parties have been trying to resurrect the hallowed name, in increasingly unrecognisable forms, ever since. DAMIEN SMITH brings GP Racing’s history of the legendary team to an end with a look at those who sought to keep the flame alive in Formula 1

Formula 1
Sep 22, 2021