Rosberg plays down team switch rumours

Thu, 9 August 2007, 01:42

Nico Rosberg has played down rumours that his current formula one boss, Sir Frank Williams, could be shaping up to use him as a team revenue-raiser.

Williams recently described the impressive 22-year-old German, who is the son of his manager and 1982 world champion Keke Rosberg, as on the same level as F1 super-talent Lewis Hamilton.

The German magazine ‘Sport Bild’ wonders if Williams’ praise is a ploy to increase Rosberg’s market value so that he can sell his 2008 contract to a high bidder.

“No,” Rosberg said, after totally dominating his experienced teammate Alex Wurz so far in 2007.

Referring to Williams’ praise, he added: “He means what he says.

“I know absolutely for sure that Frank wants to keep me in the team also next year.”

Asked if Williams would hang onto him at “any price”, however, Rosberg replied: “That is a big statement.”

Williams’ potential sale of Rosberg’s contract could be compared to Kimi Raikkonen in 2001, when privateer Sauber earned millions of dollars when McLaren came knocking.

Asked if Williams could possibly say no if a high-bidding Renault or Toyota wanted Rosberg, the young German said: “He would have to, if I did not want to go.

“He cannot force me to go somewhere. In the end it is still my decision.

“And we can’t forget that Mr (Keke) Rosberg is my manager!”

Rosberg admits, however, that his ultimate goal is to get himself into a top team, just like rookie championship leader Hamilton.

“I drove with him in karts and we were on the same level,” Rosberg said, “and we both won the GP2 championship.

“It would be great to drive at the front and have to ability to win races but for the moment that is not my position.

“So I must accept that and do everything I can to get myself in a similar position as Lewis.”

He also refused to overly criticise his current Grove-based team.

“All I will say is that the reliability is a problem,” said Nico, “but it is not my job to criticise. My job is to drive as quickly as possible.”

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