Nico Rosberg believes that it would be wrong to rule out Valtteri Bottas for the world championship, with the Finnish driver having replaced the reigning world champion at Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team and already securing his first Formula 1 wins with the silver arrows.
Bottas currently sits third in the Driver’s championship thirty-four points behind team-mate Lewis Hamiton and forty-one behind championship leader Sebastian Vettel after last weekend’s Belgian Grand Prix, however Rosberg however insists that the Finn still has a real chance of surpassing both drivers in the race for the title.
“Please do not forget about Valtteri Bottas. He really has a chance as he is fast and perhaps a bit more consistent than Lewis,” said Rosberg to Austrian newspaper Kronen Zeitung.
“Lewis is unbeatable on good days, but he also has a few more difficult weekends for various reasons.”
Rosberg admits that he has been impressed by Scuderia Ferrari’s performance this year, but the German still believes his former team will conclude the year as champions.
“I have giant respect for Ferrari, who were in no man’s land last year,” said Rosberg.
“The fact that they now lead is very, very impressive. But I still believe that, although it is still exciting, Mercedes will win in the end because they have the best car” said Rosberg.
The retired driver however has also praised Vettel for his mental strength, which in his view has an edge over Hamilton.
“We sometimes see this strength in Vettel go into unfavourable situations like Baku, simply because his self-conviction is so great,” Rosberg said.
“Lewis is a bit more inconsistent in the head, as it’s important how he arrives at the race track — is he at 100 per cent or only 95? So maybe this is a slight advantage for Sebastian.”