Rosberg’s Mind Games Extend Beyond His F1 Career: Ferrari, Vettel, & Nico Swirl

Rosberg’s Mind Games Extend Beyond His F1 Career: Ferrari, Vettel, & Nico Swirl

The latest of Rosberg’s antics include casually offering his driving services to both Tesla and Ferrari.

Nico Rosberg has never been shy about the mind games he played with Lewis Hamilton to take the F1 world title in 2016. But the German has been taking shots at the current drivers as of late – and they are pushing back.Most notably, Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton having a bit of fun with the German former world champion calling into question his relevancy as a “former driver” and drawing similarities to the kind of brand Jacques Villeneuve built after his Formula 1 career ended and he moved into the pundit space.

But lately, the trolling is seemingly getting more egregious as Rosberg is now taking aims at Sebastian Vettel’s declining form at Ferrari. With the four-time world champion struggling at this home race & his Scuderia rookie sensation driving teammate thriving at Monza, Rosberg took to his YouTube vlog and seized the opportunity to capitalize to illuminate the lack of form Vettel’s been on.

He just spun out on his own. And not only that but when he was out he then tried to force his way back on to track and took out [Lance] Stroll. So it’s like two mistakes after another and for a four-time world champion… wow… that’s pretty crazy… poor guy. The situation is so terrible for him now. Poor Sebastian this is going to be an extremely tough one.

Viewed in a vacuum, the comments Rosberg made about Vettel seem fairly innocuous. One wouldn’t think anything of it. You might even think it’s one German driver offering condolences to another German Formula 1 driver, bonded by both reaching the pinnacle of their sport – world champion.

What changes things is that Rosberg after the 2019 Italian Grand Prix jokingly offered to drive for Ferrari should Vettel accumulate 3 more points on his license and receives his 1 race ban. It’s important to note that Vettel’s dangerous rejoining of the track after his spin at Monza endangered driver safety and he was given a ten second stop-go penalty as well as 3 points to his license. He must drive without incident until the US Grand Prix or he risks reaching the 12 point limit a driver can have before the FIA enforces a race ban rule.

So with all this in mind, the slights and daggers like “wow” and how he describes Vettel’s situation as “dark times” comes into focus and is seemingly more opportunistic, even if it’s all just a joke. But I think most motorsport fans hear some element of seriousness to Rosberg’s tone. Vettel’s reputation protects him though as he is known for being a different breed of Formula 1 world champion. And while he hasn’t produced the results he gave Christian Horner at Red Bull to the Scuderia, he has been loyal and persistently defended Binotto in an era where Mercedes seems untouchable. It’s nice to see Mattia come to the support of Vettel in the manner we see below.

Ferrari Scuderia Team Boss Mattia Binotto Defends Sebastian Vettel

Other drivers also made mistakes. We have to rebuild Sebastian now and take good care of him. It is important that he feels that we and the Tifosi love him, trust him and rely on him. Because that’s what we do!

Despite hearing team bosses and different constructors on the grid, notably Red Bull Racing with Pierre Gasly, talk openly about protecting their drivers but ultimately have other plans in mind, I believe it’s safe to say Sebastian will not be forced out before his contract ends. Now should his form continue, then that’s another story entirely. But for now, the German four-time world champion still has some fight left and has the full support of the Tifosi, Scuderia, and the motorsport community.

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May 2023