As one of Formula One’s most intelligent drivers, Nico Rosberg has an affinity with languages and numbers, but he clearly has a soft spot for history, too. In winning the 30th world championship F1 race held in Australia last weekend in Melbourne, Rosberg emulated the feat of his famous father Keke, who won the inaugural race Down Under in Adelaide in 1985. And he did so with a spectacular start that would have made his father, one of the most robust and exciting drivers of the 80s, immensely proud.
Mercedes was predicted to be the class of the field as the new-look Formula One came to Melbourne, commencing a season where reliability looked to be as important as speed after racking up plenty of pre-season mileage across 12 days of pre-season testing in Spain and Bahrain. And with so much unknown about how the new season would play out, Rosberg’s dominant display showed the one aspect of the new V6 turbo era that we can be certain about is that the Silver Arrows look to be shooting their way to the very top.
After qualifying third in a Melbourne downpour that affected qualifying for the second consecutive year in Australia, Rosberg made his intentions clear lining up behind teammate and pole-sitter Lewis Hamilton on the grid, angling his car slightly to the right to make a beeline for the centre of the circuit as soon as the lights went out. Even with that suggestion of intent, his jack-rabbit start would have been beyond his wildest dreams, scything past Hamilton and fellow front-row starter Daniel Ricciardo (Red Bull Racing) to be easily in the lead before the braking point into the first turn, a 289-yard dash that effectively sealed the race.
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