Nico Rosberg has recently come clean about his wishes for his 2017 replacement under Mercedes, and it’s not the one that we’ve got.
When Rosberg decided to up and quit with little warning, he threw the Mercedes team management into an upheaval. They had mere weeks to find a suitable replacement to not only fill his spot, but ensure that Mercedes dominance would continue far into the future. After weeks of speculation and rumours, we now know that the pick is none other than Valterri Bottas.
However, it doesn’t look like Rosberg was vying for the Finn from the beginning:
“Because I’m now a fan, and on that side of the fence, it’s very easy to respond. Everyone says Alonso and I say it too, because there would be fireworks with Hamilton”
– Nico Rosberg
This mark Rosberg’s first time since his retirement that he’s publicly commented on his replacement. It’s easy to appreciate his candid response in regards to such a question, but it does make you wonder – what stance would Mercedes management take on such an answer?
Well, given that we’re dealing with a lifer in the racing world, the answer is “not a stringent one”. Rosberg was quick to dispel any sort of potential negative press that could come about from his statement:
“As a fan, it would be nice, but for the team, it wouldn’t work. They’ve found a great solution. Bottas is fast and though Hamilton will be at a very, very high level and it will be difficult to beat him, I have proved that he can.”
– Nico Rosberg
Hearing Rosberg echo a want for Fernando Alonso’s nomination to a Mercedes seat is certainly not the first time it’s come up in the discussion – and having it still fresh on the minds of many fans, it does lead credence to speculation that Bottas could be warming the seat for an Alonso placement in 2018.