The man who many F1 fans believe handed Lewis Hamilton his first F1 driver’s title in 2008 believes this may be Nico Rosberg’s year. Timo Glock appeared to tamely allow Hamilton to overtake on the last lap of the last race in Brazil after Felipe Massa had crossed the line to head up the championship.
“Maybe it’s Nico’s year” Glock tells press agency SID, adding after his 6 race winning streak that the German driver is F1’s ‘man of the hour’. The ex-F1 driver admits this is the longest F1 season ever and Hamilton still has time to make up the deficit.
Rosberg is playing it cool, repeatedly stating during the Chinese GP weekend that Hamilton is the ‘benchmark’ despite opening up a 36 point advantage over his team mate. “He will never give up,” said Nico, “and he’s the benchmark, he’s been the benchmark for the last years so the battle is going to be a big battle as always.”
The German’s psychology is interesting because by ‘bigging up’ Hamilton, Rosberg defers thoughts of pressure and premature talk of winning titles. Yet if he continues to dominate Hamilton his own stock will obviously rise because repeatedly beating ‘an F1 great’ or the ‘benchmark’ invariably makes for favourable comparisons.
With 17 race wins now under his belt, Nico Rosberg is now just 3 victories behind F1 world champions Kimi Raikkonen and Mikka Hakkinen. A victory in Russia and another in Spain would see Rosberg junior equal Nigel Mansell’s record of 5 consecutive race wins from the start of a season.