WilliamsF1 today confirmed the appointment of Nico Rosberg as a team race driver for next season. Rosberg has agreed a long term contract with the team, reflecting the commitment and confidence of both parties.
20 year old Rosberg, the recently crowned GP2 Champion, is already an established member of the Williams team, having contributed to the Williams test programme since April. The young German also made his Formula One debut with WilliamsF1 at the age of 17 in a one-off test in 2002. This made Rosberg the youngest driver in history to pilot a Formula One car.
Rosberg has been selected as a Williams race driver for a variety of important reasons, not least his undoubted and well-developed race craft which served him well in his GP2 campaign this year in a field of highly competitive and talented rivals. His natural talent in the cockpit is equally matched by his intelligence out of it, demonstrated by his depth of technical understanding over the months spent as a test driver this season.
This quality is amply represented by acceptance to Imperial College, London, to read for an engineering degree, prior to committing to a career in motorsport. In addition, Rosberg has a depth of sporting pedigree outside of motor racing, having a keen capability in sports such as football, snow boarding, jet-skiing and tennis.
Rosberg is well adapted to the demands away from the race track. While fluent in four European languages, Nico is also adept in managing the commercial necessities of his profession at the highest level. Despite his youth, his wealth of experience reflects the early start made by contemporary drivers and it is significant to note that Nico has recorded more race starts by the age of 20 than his father, the 1982 F1 World Champion, Keke, recorded in his entire career.
Nico will commence his new duties with Williams with the start of the winter test programme, which re-commences on Tuesday 29 November, with the debut run of the team’s V8 Cosworth engine in Barcelona.
Commenting on the appointment, WilliamsF1 Team Principal, Frank Williams said, “I believe I am one of many in Formula One who is genuinely excited about the prospect of Nico Rosberg. Given the attention he commands, I am delighted he has signed with us for next season.”
For his part, Nico reflected, “For quite a few years, I kept a number of options open, such as continuing my education, but this announcement is the validation after ten years of racing that I have chosen the right direction. Winning the GP2 title this season, especially given the competition, was a satisfying achievement, but of course this development is the crowning glory of a great year. I am really looking forward to starting work at the end of this month and learning as much from the team as I possibly can.”
Williams F1 Team
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