NICO ROSBERG, who has just won the 2016 Formula 1 championship after a controversial race in Abu Dhabi, has elected to retire from the Mercedes F1 team.
He’s had a rocky relationship with team-mate Lewis Hamilton in recent years but says his decision involves spending more time with his family and in particular his young daughters.
Earlier media reports after Rosberg’s defeat on the track by Hamilton at the final GP of the year in Abu Dhabi last Sunday, his second place enough, however, to win the championship. He was reported as saying that while some described them as “the worst of enemies” they did have mutual respect.
There had also been rumours of Hamilton quitting F1 after questions about his health.
‘I DECIDED ON MONDAY EVENING’
Rosberg said on his Facebook page: “From the moment when the destiny of the title was in my own hands, the big pressure started and I began to think about ending my racing career if I became World champion.
“On Sunday morning in Abu Dhabi I knew that it could be my last race and that feeling cleared my head before the start. I wanted to enjoy every part of the experience, knowing it might be the last time.
“I took my decision on Monday evening.”
LE CASTELLET RACE TO PUT FRANCE BACK ON CALENDAR?
There were also reports today (Dec 2 2016) that the French F1 GP would return to the calendar in 2018 after 10 years. Reuters reported that Bernie Ecclestone, F1 supremo, indicated that the race was more likely to happen in late August or early September and that the chosen track was the Le Castellet circuit in southern France.
Ecclestone is, however, known for making all sorts of forecasts – one of the most recent that F1 would come to Cape Town using the soccer stadium for the pits…
The French track, interestingly, is owned by the Ecclestone family trust.