Formula One World Champion Nico Rosberg celebrated title success of a different kind after Audi Sport Team Rosberg came out on top in the 2017 DTM Series.
The team won the Teams’ Championship, with its driver Rene Rast being crowned Drivers’ Champion – as team-mate Jamie Green ended the season in third place.
Rosberg was the first champion for the team named after his father, Keke Rosberg, back in 2002 with Gary Paffett claiming the Formula 3 title the same year.
Celebrating winning the titles that the pair won whilst representing their names, it was actually the first time Rosberg Jr had met the pair.
“The party was great. I met a lot of people that played important roles in my own career. And I met René and Jamie. They delivered in outstanding style, this season,” he told DTM.com.
It was decided early on if either of the drivers, or team, had a chance to win the title in the final race, the pair would go out to the Hockenheimring.
The focus was firmly on Rast, who had become the first driver in the modern era of the DTM to win the championship if their rookie season.
“He was absolutely thrilled. To date, we had just loose contact but now, we finally had the opportunity for chatting extensively. René can look back on a great season and demonstrated that he is one of the really great drivers. It was a pleasure to congratulate him on his success.”
Off the back of his F1 success last year, Rosberg knows the hectic media commitments that becoming champion entails and was asked whether he has any advice for his countryman.
“After all, he already has won a lot of championships. That’s nothing new to him. Okay, things will get a little more hectic than following his previous successes but he will know how to cope with it. I think he already looks forward to the title-defence campaign in 2018.”
For a team winning the championship is so much more than the driver who comes out but everyone behind the scenes as well, especially when a team takes the title with such an advantage as Team Rosberg did.
“Titles are the reward for very hard work. As I said, many of the guys have been members of the team for a very long time. Particularly Arno Zensen. He so often was pipped in the battle for championships and to now win the title in such a heartbeat finale – that’s the crowning achievement. But it’s not only him. From the truckie to the mechanics – it’s just great to see how many guys stuck to the team for such a long time. My former vehicle engineer from my F3 days, for instance, now attended to Jamie. They all gave their very best, this year, and dominated the championship.
“No doubt, the drivers’ title is important. But for Team Rosberg, the team title also is of major importance. Not only because the title was won but because it was won in such a superior style. An amazing achievement. The team won the title with a lead of nearly 100 points over the second-placed squad. They really raced on a level of their own, this year. And both drivers had title chances up to the final race. Achieving more is just impossible. A truly impressive performance.”
At this point in his life Rosberg does not see himself taking up the mantle of Team Principal but is open to the opportunity in the future. Rosberg is of course currently working with Robert Kubica to aiming towards the Polish driver potential returning to the F1 grid.
In terms of the future of Team Rosberg, as well as their DTM entry the team will return to GT in a joint effort with Lamborghini.