|Full Name:||Nico Erik Rosberg|
|Born:||27 June 1985, Weisbaden (DEU)|
|First GP:||2006 Bahrain Grand Prix|
|Last GP:||2011 Brazilian Grand Prix|
|2002||Formula BMW ADAC, VIVA Racing, 20 races, 5 wins, 13 podiums, 9 poles, 264 points, 1st overall|
|2004||Formula 3 EuroSeries, Team Rosberg, 19 races, 3 wins, 5 podiums, 70 points, 4th overall|
|2005||GP2 Series, ART Grand Prix, 23 races, 5 wins, 12 podiums, 4 poles, 120 points, 1st overall|
|Formula 1, Williams BMW FW27, Test Driver|
|2006||Formula 1, Williams Cosworth FW28, 18 races, 4 points 17th overall|
|2007||Formula 1, Williams Toyota FW29, 17 races, 20 points 9th overall|
|2008||Formula 1, Williams Toyota FW30, 18 races, 2 podiums, 17 points, 13th overall|
|2009||Formula 1, Williams Toyota FW31, 17 races, 34.50 points, 7th overall|
|2010||Formula 1, Mercedes GP W01, 19 races, 3 podiums, 142 points, 7th overall|
|2011||Formula 1, Mercedes GP W02, 19 races, 89 points, 7th overall|
The son of former World Champion Keke Rosberg, Nico may share the same bloodline and profession as his father, but he doesn’t share his father’s nationality: he races under the German flag, and despite being multilingual, he cannot speak Finnish.
A career in motorsport was always on the cards, and with his father’s backing, he rocketed through the karting ranks, finishing runner-up to team-mate Lewis Hamilton in the FIA Formula A Karting championship in 2000.
He graduated into open-wheel competition in 2002, and cleaned up in his debut season in the German Formula BMW championship, winning just over half of the seventeen races and waltzing to the title.
Two seasons of Formula 3 followed, before he took the jump into the GP2 Series championship in 2005 with the frontrunning ART Grand Prix team. He waged a tight season-long battle with Heikki Kovalainen for top honours, hanging on to win the championship by fifteen points.
Through his father’s connections with Williams, Nico was snaffled up by the Grove team and locked into a long-term contract. In 2006, he would make his debut with the very team that had propelled his father to World Championship glory two decades previously.
His speed was immediately apparent on debut when he set fastest lap at his first Grand Prix. But the Cosworth-powered FW28 struggled with its underpowered engine, and there was little that Nico could do to show his potential in his first year on the Grand Prix stage.
Partnered with Alexander Wurz for the 2007 season and with a switch to Toyota engines having been undertaken, Nico was the quicker of the pairing and had some excellent races.
Rejecting an offer to join McLaren, he claimed two podium finishes in 2008 and drove impressively in 2009 – but it was clear that Williams was not going to move him towards the front of the field, so he signed with Mercedes for the 2010 season.
Despite concerns that he would be up against it when paired with Michael Schumacher, Rosberg’s points tally almost doubled the seven-time World Champion’s by the end of the year, as he again produced some sparkling drives despite the car’s overall potential.
While the margin between the pair reduced significantly in 2011, Rosberg still held the upper hand in qualifying. But he was rather more anonymous in the races, raising questions as to whether he has the ability and the hunger to crack the next level in F1.
Rosberg’s 2012 Prospects
With over 100 Grand Prix starts to his name, it has got to be bothering Nico that he still hasn’t stood on the top step of the podium.
But one mustn’t point fingers at the driver when he also has never really had the equipment to get him there either. Granted, he did come close when leading the Chinese Grand Prix in the rain in 2010, but he was forced to ease off when the team realised it had miscalculated his fuel consumption.
He finished marginally ahead of team-mate Schumacher in the points’ standings last year, and the pair engaged in some lively on-track battles at times. He’ll be looking to maintain his advantage and ensure that he’s in the position to claim his first – and Mercedes’ tenth – Grand Prix victory, should the cards fall his way this year.
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