Nico Rosberg joins Mercedes for 2010

Posted on

| Written by

Nico Rosberg has joined the new Mercedes F1 team for 2010
Nico Rosberg has joined the new Mercedes F1 team for 2010

Mercedes has confirmed Nico Rosberg will drive for them in 2010.

It’s a massive opportunity for Rosberg, who joins the team which were the championship winners this year as Brawn, despite not yet having won a Grand Prix.

The news had been widely expected since Rosberg confirmed he was leaving Williams almost a month ago.

Rosberg made his F1 debut for Williams in 2006 and has started 70 Grands Prix for the team. He scored his best result at Singapore last year, finishing second.

Mercedes are yet to announce Rosberg’s team mate.

Nick Heidfeld is considered a safe tip for the seat. But the possibility Michael Schumacher could make a long-awaited return to Mercedes is surely the more exciting prospect.

Rosberg and Mercedes

Press release

From the 2010 season, German driver Nico Rosberg will drive for the new Mercedes team in the Formula 1 World Championship, Mercedes-Benz Motorsport announced today.

Three years after his father Keke had won the Formula 1 World Championship, Nico Rosberg, 24, was born in Wiesbaden, Germany on 27 June 1985, inheriting his racing DNA from his father.

At the age of eight, Nico Rosberg began racing karts. From 1997 until 2000, he raced for the MBM team (the talent support programme of Mercedes-Benz McLaren); with this team, the two Formula 1 partners encouraged young talents. Nico?s team-mate at that time was Lewis Hamilton,, McLaren Mercedes driver since 2007 and 2008 Formula 1 World Champion. In 2000, Nico was runner-up in the Formula A European Championship. Two years later, he entered his first car races in Formula BMW ADAC and clinched the title in his debut year with nine victories out of 18 races. A Williams Formula 1 test drive was the reward for the championship win – at the age of 17, Nico was the youngest driver ever to get such an opportunity.

In 2003 and 2004, Nico Rosberg participated in the then new Formula 3 Euro Series; in his first year he came home second in the rookie rankings and in 2004 he finished fourth overall. One year later in 2005, he moved up to the GP2 series which is staged alongside Formula 1 events and won the title.

The 2006 season opener at Bahrain on 12 March was Nico?s first Formula 1 race; he finished seventh and posted the fastest lap. To date, he has taken part in 70 Grands Prix, all for the Williams team; scoring a total of 75.5 points and achieving second place at the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix as his best Formula 1 result. The 2009 season was Nico?s best in Formula 1 so far; finishing seventh overall with 34.5 points.

Nico Rosberg grew up in Germany, Monaco and at Ibiza; in addition to his mother tongue he is fluent in English, Italian and French.

Nico Rosberg: ??I am really happy to be a part of the Silver Arrows re-launch in 2010 as a driver for Mercedes. No other brand in Formula 1 can look back on such a long and successful tradition in motor racing. I am very proud that I will now drive for the new Mercedes team and work with Ross Brawn. I am more motivated than ever and can hardly wait to start testing with the new Silver Arrow and for the first race of the new season at Bahrain on 14 March 2010.??

Ross Brawn, Team Principal: ??We are delighted to welcome Nico Rosberg to our Mercedes team and are very much looking forward to working with him. Nico is a great talent, and with four years of experience in Formula 1, is a driver who will be able to make a valuable contribution to our team right from the outset. I had the pleasure of working with his father Keke during his Formula One career and it is great to see Nico following in his footsteps. 2009 was Nico?s best season in Formula 1 to date and we look forward to seeing his development continue with us at Mercedes next year.??

Norbert Haug, Vice President Mercedes-Benz Motorsport: ??I saw Nico racing karts alongside Lewis Hamilton and later in the support programme of the DTM events – I have known him since he was a young boy. Early on it was obvious that he would make his way as a race driver and we are glad that after four years with Williams he will now be one of our drivers at Mercedes. It makes our re-start even nicer, that we have as talented and sympathetic a driver as Nico in our line-up. Nico has positive ambitions, we have positive ambitions and together we want to achieve a great deal. I am really looking forward to working with him.??

Nico Rosberg is officially a Mercedes driver
Nico Rosberg is officially a Mercedes driver

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

106 comments on “Nico Rosberg joins Mercedes for 2010”

  1. But let’s hope for a Kimi/ Nico pairing….

    1. Schumi/ Rosberg would be even better. Or mabye they could sack Rosberg and run Schumi and Raikkonen! But now I’m getting carried away

      1. Ned I thought you didn’t like Schuey ? lol

        1. I don’t like Schumacher either. Doesn’t mean I wouldn’t like to see him drive :)

        2. Yeah- exactly what Patrickl said. I’m a fan of F1, and Schumi would make the sport better.

          1. I’d like him for maybe a nivelty race see how he would do against the young blood but that’s it.

        3. Well it looks like neither will partner him so who’s your third choice? It’s Sato isn’t it, everyone love Takuma Sato.

          Btw that picture of Rosberg in the Merc shirt is sickening. It looks like he’s about to tell us he’s “worth it” or some other similar abhorrence.

          1. Yeah, Ralph and Rosberg would be awesome :P

          2. Kobayashi! :P

          3. Indeed in that picture he really looks like a “Britney” huh?

          4. I’d go for Kobayashi too

    2. Sorry friend Kimi won’t race next season,would love the paring.

  2. Mercedez better find a good team-mate for Nico Rosberg, so that we can properly evaluate him now.

    Good Luck Nico!!

    1. I think we have a half decent evaluation of him already.

      He beat Nakajima and Wurz, but neither of them are world beaters. The only good driver he’s had as team mate was Mark Webber, who destroyed him (although of course it was his first season).

      1. Now, now, “destroyed” is a bit much don’t you think?

        They both had an abysmal season with each almost a dozen DNF’s.

        Webber outqalified Rosberg quite a lot, but qualifying was always something that Webber was famous for. Until he got teamed up with Vettel I guess.

        1. I suppose Rosberg did well at first, but after the first third of the season he was nowhere. Webber was usually in some sort of contention in this time- I remember he retired from the front at Monaco and Germany

          1. But then when we look at when they actually finished, Webber came 10th, 10th and 8th in the last few races (that he finished) Rosberg 11th and 10th.

            If you are looking only at exceptional races, why not his first race in Bahrain? Indeed Rosberg made a mistake in the first corner and ended up last, but came back to take P7 right behind Webber.

            Obviously Webber outdid Rosberg in Rosberg’s rookie year, but I don’t think the difference was that big.

          2. I always wondered (and still do) why Nico is so fancied.

            While ‘destroyed’ may be a bit much, I don’t think ‘decisively beaten’ is far from the truth, and he’s had unremarkable teammates since Webber.

            Still – he seems nice enough. I hope he proves me wrong. :)

          3. True, it’s difficult to be sure without a proper comparison. Still, there is some to go on.

            Rosberg was pretty well matched up to Hamilton in his junior years. After that he also won the GP2 (F3000 in his first year.

            You can say that he didn’t beat his experienced team mate in his first season, but which rookie driver does?

            Look at Massa’s seasons before 2008 (“destroyed” by Heidfeld and Fisichella). Look at Kimi also being “destroyed” by Heidfeld. Heidfeld himself performed absolutely abysmal in his rookie year before Kimi too. Alonso got “destroyed” by Tarso Marques!

            I doubt there are many drivers that were instantly better than an experienced team mate. Drivers like Hamilton, Senna and Schumacher.

            Nakajima and Wurz aren’t bad. Rosberg beat them quite decisively.

      2. Webber 7 Points, Rosberg 4 Points.

        At the end, the battle wanst agaings each other, I think the battle was against the FW28.

  3. I see that the AMG sub-brand will get a more prominent role within the new Mercedes team.

    1. I hope they don’t badge the engines AMG. It would be kind of an insult to the guys at Merc HPE.

  4. “No other brand in Formula 1 can look back on such a long and successful tradition in motor racing.”

    Errr.. Ferrari perhaps Nico?

    1. Haha yeah I thought that. I read it about 4 times to make sure I’d read it right!

    2. I hate PR talk. Or publicocrap as they say on F1 Rejects

    3. Glad I wasn’t the only one “tutting” when I read that!

      I guess Mercedes were racing in the 1930’s against the likes of Alfa Romeo and Auto Union…but that’s not exactly Formula 1 history is it.

      1. They technically didn’t say tradition in F1 though, they said tradition in Motor Racing.

        Merc started going racing in the early 20’s, Ferrari didn’t show up until the late 40’s.

        But yes, the PR spin put on it makes it look as if they were talking about F1 motor racing. Ferrari most definately do take the biscuit there.

      2. Mike "the bike" Schumacher
        23rd November 2009, 22:23

        Hey doesn’t anyone remember the mercedes w196 which won the 1954 and 1955 drivers championships winning 9 out of 12 grands prix they only pulled out of f1 after the horrible Le mans accident in ’55. Defiantly in the top ten greatest f1 cars ever.

        I asked in a comment a few days ago if Brawn were the best team ever for percentage wins and championships, well i guess i just answered myself Mercedes are!!

    4. Quite impressive for a brand who has been absent from the sport for about 40 years…

    5. no. Mercedes were competing in GP’s in the 30’s. At that time Ferrari was still running the Alfa team. So Mercedes do have a longer history in motorsport than Ferrari (as a brand)

    6. Errr…. He says “motor racing”, not “F1”. Mercedes has had a far more widespread (successful) history of motorsport than Ferrari. And plus, Mercedes total involvement in Formula1, both as a Constructor and an engine supplier has yielded a total of 8 Championships from just 16 years, with the 1954 and ’55 seasons not including the Constructor’s Championship, which (incidentally) Mercedes would have won one of those years if it existed. Winning a Championship 50% of seasons entered is perhaps a better record than Ferrari’s, yes?

      1. Sorry, forgot Sauber in the late 80’s and Ferrari’s F1 record (better than Merc, as it turns out), but Mercedes started competing in the first Grand Prix race in 1894 (?), nearly 50 years before Ferrari even truly existed.

        Rosberg has not spoken out of place. Merc has a far more illustrious history in motorsport and Grand Prix racing in particular than Ferrari.

        Go Nico! I expect he will surprise many of his critics, same as (arguably) Webber and Massa have already done.

    7. He is talking about motor racing, not only Formula 1, so he is right to say it.

  5. Good for him. I think he has a lot of talent. It will be interesting to see what he can do in a top-line car.

    1. That’s assuming the BGP002 is any good

      1. Considering the fact that the focus was switched to next years’ car after Turkey this year (bar a few times later), I’d say it’ll be pretty good.

      2. I don’t think it’s gonna be called BGP002… maybe MB001?

        1. In the spirit of their road cars and the team’s heritage, why not the Mercedes BGP?

          Mind you, Mercedes-Brawn née Honda would be more accurate ;)

          1. Mike "the bike" Schumacher
            23rd November 2009, 22:28

            Née BAR, Née Tyrell

  6. Schumacher wont race for Mercedes, Ross has denied it officially. Now, who else could they choose? Kimi has also officially said that he wont join the Mercedes for 2010. Is Heidfeld their only choice? If it is true that Schumacher and Kimi wont race for the new team next year, then I must say McLaren made a amazing move by luring Button across.

    If they cannot get a champion driver for next year, I doubt that they will be in contention to the championship title. I must say that Rosberg is a fantastic driver, but so are Hamilton, Massa and Alonso ! With the early preparation of the 2 other teams, I cannot see how Ross can give us another surprise in 2010.

    1. Brawn actually started developing the 2010 car back in June, roughly the same time that Ferrari started. Brawn believed the car had a big enough advantage over the other cars to see out the season. He was right, just.

      Mercedes will be strong contendors next year!

      1. True, but look at BMW. The cars will be longer next year and the change might be enough to send Brawn down the wrong way and leave them behind for a few races.

    2. Is Heidfeld their only choice?

      There’s always Kovalainen, Trulli, Nakajima, Kobayashi… if Merc were interested in a kind of “multinational” flavour :)

  7. If his team mate isn’t MS it will be Heidfeld.

    1. Or Raikkonen. Or Kubica. Or …

      1. Piquet? Ãhh, Ok, sorry…

        1. Or Davidson

  8. Good luck to him. Finally Rosberg gets a chance to be number 1 driver in a car which should be very competitive. Hopefully he’ll live up to all the hype.

  9. I don’t think that Rosberg (I don’t rate him as a great driver) will be up for the job, but with Brawn as manager, he might be able to surprise us. In my opinion Mercedes’ chances are somewhat diminished due to the fact that the rule changes are not that significant and they won’t have a top driver.

    1. You need to look at it this way. It’s called a racing “team”. Much more goes into it than just the driver. Perhaps Rosberg has not yet been in the right combination for his abilities to manifest. Much more than just Ross Brawn as Principal. Although I will allow that Ross Brawn is one of the best at choosing high achievers to work for him. And that, I believe, will be the secret in any success Rosberg has with Mercedes. Much the way Button had success this year with BrawnGP, after so many mediocre years with other teams.

      And to be a trult “great” driver, a driver must be able to excel in multiple disciplines, not just in Formula 1 with 10 million dollars worth of computers running the car for him.

      Perhaps that’s why F1 drivers who go elsewhere seldom have much success.

  10. What about Adrian Sutil, he’s German and shows promise. Or would Rosberg’s management stop him cause he may be to quick? That’s why I see Heidfeld joining him.

    1. But Heidfeld will be quick as well, he might even beat Rosberg.
      I don’t think that the’ll go for the rather crash-prone (although not always his fault) Sutil if they can get Heidfeld.

      1. With Kimi absent from the grid, I don’t think Sutil will be as crash-prone next season :).

    2. As Haug says, he saw Rosberg and Hamilton competing in 2000 and I would assume also in 2004. They were pretty well matched.

      I’m sure he also saw Hamilton and Sutil competing together when they were team mates. Sutil got completely blown away.

      1. I read an interesting article about them in Kart years sometime ago:

        Dino Chiesa helps us to highlight some basic characteristics concerning these two drivers when they used to race in karts.

        Both were very fast, hardly any time difference in lapping. However, Nico avoided taking risks, he was happy with the results he got while Hamilton was more determined and that’s what makes the difference in racing.

        Another thing in Hamilton’s favour was that he always had a trick up his sleeve, he used 90% of his potential and only when it was necessary did he give it all he had, and that was usually as the race was about to end. The same strategy that Lewis seems to adopt even today in F1.

        Link HERE

        1. Nice article. Thanks.

          BTW Isn’t that “90% thing” something that all drivers do?

          They take much more risk doing a qualifying lap than they do during a race lap.

        2. Lewis at 90% is more than a match for Rosberg at 100%. Rosberg knows this; he knows what it’s like to be beaten by Lewis in the same team. That’s why he was desperate to avoid McLaren. The same is true of Vettel when he re-signed for RBR; and Kubica when he was never mentioned vis-à-vis Kovi’s seat. All the drivers have seen what Lewis did to Fernando, and what he did prior to F1; they all want to avoid him. It’s not that McLaren is somehow ‘Lewis’s team’. In that vein, it used to be ‘Lauda’s team’; then Prost’s; then Senna’s. If anyone could beat Lewis, consistently, it would become their team. But, of course, no one could.

          1. Thats why heikki found it so hard, because lewis constantly showed mclaren that he could do a better job with the car, so he got the upgrades first. simple.

            if you are a major team, you are not going to give the best parts to your slower driver just so he can feel better about himself.

            every team has its perfered driver although its not as it used to be like in the schumi era, where barrichello wasnt even alowed to win by the team.

            its just there is alot more media interest behind the big teams, McLaren, Ferrari. nobody cares if Torro Rosso favour buemi over ALG, which they probably do.

          2. Pedel to the Vettel
            23rd November 2009, 23:53

            I think if either Hamilton, Rosberg or Vettel were teamed together they would never win a world title because the team wouldn’t know who to give the best parts to because the results would be the same and having more Lewis vs Alonso fights all year.

            I got nothing with Lewis Hamilton fans but it gets so boring hearing them always say he is the best thing since sliced bread, while there are another 2-3 drivers who can match what Hamilton can. But most Hamilton fans are blind because they dont look at the facts, all they care about is that Lewis wins regardless how good his car was previously.

            When i talk to other people who use the words “Lewis Hamilton” i just switch off and ignore because it is just going to be “Why Lewis Hamilton will be the best F1 driver EVER!!!!!!!!” yes he will be one of the best but never “The Best”

            Just because he nearly won his rookie year and is the youngest “single” world champion doesn’t mean it is set in stone that he will carry on like that or even Mclaren for that fact.

            The 2010 car could be worse then the end result of 2009. So dont bother going for the hype just yet because of them saying the MP4-25 will be “revolutionary” because they said that last year with the MP4-24 and we all know how that turned out.

          3. Did you miss this season? Hamilton looked a whole lot more convincing in that underperforming McLaren than Vettel did in the fastest car on the grid.

  11. Cor, never saw that coming. :D

    Still can’t work out who they’ll have as #2 though. No rookies, it won’t be MSchu or Kimi, I’ve never rated Heidfeld… Chris “Squeaky” Klien?

  12. Several things to mention in this post. First of all a shout out to Mr Internal Server Error 500.

    I’ve done this post in Notepad so he can’t get me yet again.

    “I am really happy to be a part of the Silver Arrows re-launch in 2010 as a driver for Mercedes.” -Nico Rosberg

    I had no idea it was official. Silver Arrows. Did I miss something?

    “No other brand in Formula 1 can look back on such a long and successful tradition in motor racing. “-Nico Rosberg

    If he means no other brand CURRENTLY in Formula 1, he is almost correct. I think Ferrari might be a stumbling block on this, though. If he means motorsport in general, Mercedes has contemporaries still racing, in Formula 1 and in other series. Porche. Audi. Renault. Enough said.

    I can only hope he was simply caught up in the heat of the moment, so to speak. Young Nico must certainly think of this as the ancient Norsemen thought of a seat at the feast table in Valhalla. It troubles me to think that he is so lacking in his historical education as to actually believe such a thing.

    1. It think its pretty well established that Merc have been in motorspot longer than Ferrari (see the earlier posts). As for other racing contempories, why stop there – lets mention the steam cars that were racing in the late 1800’s, or chariot racing in ancient rome.

      My point is – lets not over-analyse every statement that comes out of a sports persons mouth – its not rocket science.

  13. If they dont opt for Schumi/KIMI, Heidfiled will be the safest bet. NO other remaining driver is as good as NICK.Sutil wud be as fast as Nick but he is erratic.

    I think Kubica ll be released from Renault

  14. Must be tough to find a verbal german comedian who can drive and develop a F1 car all by himself?

  15. Pedel to the Vettel
    23rd November 2009, 15:37

    Rosberg will be looking like the dark horse for the 2010 world title, since i consider Rosberg on the same level as Vettel and Hamilton all this year he has overtaken other drivers numerous times in a half decent car and sometimes keeping up with the mclarens, brawns and red bulls at the end of the season.

    2010 is looking to be harder to predict who will win then 2009, if everyone looks at this seasons end performance of the cars for each team.

    1. Yes, last year was difficult to predict too… until the Brawn came up

      1. yea it was but this year the biggest rule changes in the s