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Revising Nico Rosberg's F1 Career in Light of 2013


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#1 Muz Bee

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 02:12

Many here, I know, have wondered how Nico rated against the best of this era. His years of perseverance at a declining Williams F1 providing all too few decent results and against unrated teammates who he generally dominated, getting a perspective on "how good is Nico" was impossible.

Just to provide a potted history of his F1 career to date and especially pre 2010. Nico made an immediate impact as an F1 driver when on debut he was immediately quick, setting the fastest lap at his first GP. He qualified 3rd at the next GP which also raised eyebrows. His teammate Webber eventually got the better of him as the team's performances fell off the chart. My feeling at the time was that it is always easier for an experienced F1 driver to work around the problems of a rubbish car than it is for a rookie. It has forever grated with me that people wanting to denigrate Rosberg's claim to real ability used the statement "Webber destroyed Rosberg at Williams". The fact that Webber scored 7 points, Rosberg 4 point in 2006 points to the fact that the season was a disaster for Williams, not Rosberg. It was their worst season since entering the sport in the 70s and only 3 years after being a competitive 2nd in the WCC.

2007 with the change to Toyota power Williams had another 3 poor seasons where Rosberg collected almost all the team's points, highlights being a 2nd and 3rd in a season which Williams finished a hopeless 8th in the WCC. Teammate Nakajima scored few points while Rosberg on occasions looked competitive before falling foul of poor tactics or rotten luck. 2009 was even worse and rumours of Nico being wooed by McLaren highlighted the fact that he was rated by those in pitlane.

Rosberg's departure to and time at Mercedes from 2010 - 12 with Schumacher as teammate i don't need to go into other than to say that to all but the most avoid Schumacher fans Nico was dominant. Michael's absence from the sport and age called into question whether this represented any kind of yardstick to measure Nico by. From Webber to Wurz to Nakajima to Schumacher how could Nico handle the brilliance and speed of Lewis Hamilton as a teammate?

So to conclude this career recap (and I have deliberately ignored pre F1 as other classes can give very poor indicators) I look to 2013 to be the year that we can truly assess the ability of Nico Rosberg son of 1982 WDC Keke Rosberg. I have to admit to being more than a little surprised my Nico's performances against Lewis especially raw speed and qualifying as I rated Hamilton the fastest of the era in these areas. With some great performances alongside teammate Lewis Hamilton, how do you now rate Nico in a career that started in 2006 with a bang, even if a small one, fizzled, and then came back to light?

Edited by Muz Bee, 03 June 2013 - 02:14.


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#2 Mr. Salty

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 02:20

I'm guessing this thread is going to end like this. Possibly with a ban!

A quick read of the rules reveals:

NEW AS AT JANUARY 2013:

We have also taken the decision to ban the general driver threads. They have evolved beyond their original remit to track items of interest only to that driver and have been used to variously discuss areas outside of motorsport, on track incidents involving that driver, teammate battles and for many other discussions well outside of the topic. Threads can still be started to discuss issues affecting a single driver, but this must be with a specific remit or point of discussion, such as the possibility of them racing in a particular series or team.

Therefore unfortunately, this topic is closed.


#3 Muz Bee

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 02:29

I'm guessing this thread is going to end like this. Possibly with a ban!

A quick read of the rules reveals:

NEW AS AT JANUARY 2013:

We have also taken the decision to ban the general driver threads. They have evolved beyond their original remit to track items of interest only to that driver and have been used to variously discuss areas outside of motorsport, on track incidents involving that driver, teammate battles and for many other discussions well outside of the topic. Threads can still be started to discuss issues affecting a single driver, but this must be with a specific remit or point of discussion, such as the possibility of them racing in a particular series or team.

Therefore unfortunately, this topic is closed.


Well I'm not guessing that Mr Salty I'm keeping my fingers crossed. My intent was to get away from the dominance of Hamilton cheerleaders to use the teammate comparison as a one dimensional tool to elevate their driver. I used to roll my eyes at the Lewis v Jenson mudslinging that happened between two polarised groups, it led to so little constructive discussion.

OK it could be construed that this refired attempt at discussing Nico's career and where it has led and a retrospective assessment, is nothing but another form of fan worship. Not my intent, I just would like to hear how people view a career that has at times been bogged down by being continuously in the wrong place at the wrong time.

I admit I failed to view the house rules and I think there's a skinny line in there somewhere that allows a particular aspect of discussion about a driver to be allowable as a single driver type of thread. I certainly don't want to be responsible for starting a thread that just becomes a big S*$@fight!

EDIT Seeing a thread titled "It's Schumacher not Rosberg we need to reappraise" perhaps gives some credence to the need for this topic but I also am looking to see if there's another thread that makes this redundant.

Edited by Muz Bee, 03 June 2013 - 02:36.


#4 Brother Fox

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 02:42

I hope a thread like this is allowed to run, as its not meaning to be a Nico fanfest where you post this is what Nico said on twitter, Nico is appearing at xxxx for PR, Nico has a new pet dog (big news apparently) etc etc

I think it could well be the make or break year for him. Funny he has the wrong place/wrong time curse, might have inherited that from his rookie year partner at Williams.
I'll need to see a bit more to be convinced if hes the genuine cream of the crop or another solid top level driver. Monaco was his once he got cleanly through Turn 1 lap 1 so lets see.



i don't need to go into other than to say that to all but the most avoid Schumacher fans Nico was dominant.

Not sure I can agree to this though?

#5 pingu666

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 02:45

my opinion of rosberg was always that he was good, but never sure how good, the other things of note where a) made mistake in singapour when could of won, and b) no spark of omg he is amazing standout moment. (for me)

last ones of those for me have been kyle larson, chilli bowl, bristol and at the rock


#6 Nobody

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 02:54

Hang on... Let me get this – he starts beating Lewis so that means.... yup got it!

#7 Muz Bee

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 02:56

my opinion of rosberg was always that he was good, but never sure how good, the other things of note where a) made mistake in singapour when could of won, and b) no spark of omg he is amazing standout moment. (for me)

last ones of those for me have been kyle larson, chilli bowl, bristol and at the rock


Yep Singapore was a possible win definite second thrown away and he put up his hand for it. On the other hand Webber clobbered in Korea what (as things turned out) a likely win there.

I guess standout moments down the field don't tend to get noticed but some of his drives in a dog Williams were pretty good. Jury still out....

#8 Muz Bee

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 02:58

Hang on... Let me get this – he starts beating Lewis so that means.... yup got it!

Sorry Nobody didn't quite get your drift. Are you saying Hamilton is ordinary?

I think it's fair to say Jenson's star shone a little brighter for showing how close to Hamilton he was overall.

#9 Nobody

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 03:23

Sorry Nobody didn't quite get your drift. Are you saying Hamilton is ordinary?

I think it's fair to say Jenson's star shone a little brighter for showing how close to Hamilton he was overall.


All I'm saying is we've 're-appraised' Jenson and Nico now, but not Lewis... None of them are ordinary ofcourse

#10 SparkPlug

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 04:52

I think we have to definitely agree on one thing here : that Lewis Hamilton is a top drawer driver in F1. In all my years of watching F1, I have never seen a driver more impressive in his debut season than Lewis Hamilton. He was up against, the best driver on the grid in 2007 and did his own reputation no harm. Overall, Lewis did beat Alonso - Brazil and China 2007 skewed the points table in favor of Alonso - fans out here are far too critical of Lewis' one mistake that season at China, when we're accustomed to seeing all other rookies crash and burn their fingers multiple times in their first season and not blink an eyelid about it. I know I'm opening a can of worms here but this is what I've believed from the start - its my opinion.

So why am I bringing up the very controversial 2007 into this ? Its because I think there is no case for anyone to say "Lewis is not top drawer, he was just overhyped blah blah" - on the basis of 2007 alone. He won a championship the following year in a car that was at best equal to Ferrari, and against strong competition. So in my eyes there can be no second thoughts about Hamilton not being one of the very best on this grid along with Vettel and Alonso - indisputable.

In light of this, when we see Nico Rosberg, now giving a mighty tough time to Hamilton, I have to start believing that here is a driver, that has been wrapped up and underhyped for the past 7 years. He has either been driving terrible cars, or been up against teammates whose quality was uncertain at the best of times (Schumacher). So the press was always quick to dismiss everything this young lad has done.

Does this mean Rosberg is on the same level as the other 'top 3' ? Not yet. Lets get to the end of this season first, I still think Lewis will start getting the measure of him sometime towards the middle of the season. But if he doesn't start putting distance between himself and Rosberg by the end, I'll definitely think of Rosberg as one of the top drivers on this grid. He's superb in qualifying, extremely consistent, keeps his nose out of trouble and is WDC material. He's also shown tremendous composure under intense pressure of being up against two of the most popular and charismatic drivers of our times in Schumacher and Hamilton.

#11 Astro

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 06:40

So why am I bringing up the very controversial 2007 into this ? Its because I think there is no case for anyone to say "Lewis is not top drawer, he was just overhyped blah blah" - on the basis of 2007 alone. He won a championship the following year in a car that was at best equal to Ferrari, and against strong competition. So in my eyes there can be no second thoughts about Hamilton not being one of the very best on this grid along with Vettel and Alonso - indisputable.


Most of Hamilton's fame rest on 2007, and I think it is a mistake. Something similar can be said about Massa and Raikkonen, for example. Some people thought Massa doing a better year than Raikkonen in 2008 made him automatically a great driver, which he has never been, IMO. It is similar regarding Hamilton and Alonso. There are always circunstances in motor racing that go beyond the driver.

Personally, I've always regarded Nico quite high. Before this year started, I remember telling a friend of mine that Hamilton was going to have a tough time beating Nico, and he looked at me as if I had said something moronic.

I think they are both quite similar drivers (they drove for the same team and learned from each other, so I guess that may be one reason). I feel Nico has a slight edge over Hamilton during race day, but it is still too soon to make a judgment. Only time will tell.

#12 apoka

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 07:14

I followed Nico's career quite closely at times. I think he always looked fast and added consistency later on. The year in which I made up my mind was 2009. At that time, it was clear for me that he is a top driver. Being a Schumacher fan, I wasn't very pleased to see him coming back as Nico's team mate. Some of the worst career choices you can make is going up against underrated drivers. "Underrated" refers to how we was seen in the eyes of the public. If you look at the team principal votes, then he was 8th, 5th, 7th in the past 3 years, so he is rated quite highly there when considering that he wasn't really successful in terms of points and didn't have a single race win for a long time.


#13 P123

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 07:40

We've only had 6 races.

I'm not sure about re-appraising, that would be jumping the gun, but it probably brings more attention to his F1 career prior to having Hamilton as a teammate.

#14 SophieB

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 08:07

So to conclude this career recap (and I have deliberately ignored pre F1 as other classes can give very poor indicators) I look to 2013 to be the year that we can truly assess the ability of Nico Rosberg son of 1982 WDC Keke Rosberg. I have to admit to being more than a little surprised my Nico's performances against Lewis especially raw speed and qualifying as I rated Hamilton the fastest of the era in these areas. With some great performances alongside teammate Lewis Hamilton, how do you now rate Nico in a career that started in 2006 with a bang, even if a small one, fizzled, and then came back to light?


The recent Michael Schumacher thread was focussed on one aspect of his career - his comeback - and asked a specific question: Had Rosberg been underappreciated/ Schumacher judged too harshly during his comeback? This thread sounds like it is more looking to the future for Nico in a general way, hoping his battle with his team mate leads to his reputation as a driver increasing. Well, we have a thread devoted to that very thing:

Hamilton Vs Rosberg - 2013 Part 2 [merged]

If there are any Nico fans who feel the existing thread is too Hamilton-centric, the answer is to go there and put forward your perspective. Be the change you want to see! But this thread is closed.