Nico Rosberg has signed a new two year deal with Mercedes, putting him in the Silver Arrows seat until the end of he 2018 season.
Rosberg has enjoyed two successful seasons with Mercedes although the glory of the Drivers Championship has eluded him so far, however this season he has put together a string of good performances and currently sits atop the standings, albeit by the narrowest of margins over his team-mate Lewis Hamilton.
“Nico has been a core member of the Silver Arrows since the team returned to the sport in 2010 and has played a crucial role in the team’s success in that time,” a Mercedes statement said.
The deal means that Mercedes are locked into their current line-up until the end of 2018 – which is when Lewis Hamilton’s contract also expires. At that point who knows what may happen. There has been talk from Christian Horner than former Red Bull and current Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel would want to move to Mercedes, and that Ferrari are waiting for Hamilton’s contract to expire to make him a “godfather” offer to come and drive for the Prancing Horse.
The contract extension doesn’t really surprise anyone, especially after Ferrari confirmed Kimi Raikkonen for the 2017 season. While the relationship between Rosberg and Hamilton has come under heavy scrutiny with their fierce battles and occasional collisions on track this year the relationship between Rosberg and the Mercedes team has always been strong. Even with the upcoming regulation changes for next season Mercedes represent the best chance Rosberg has to win a World Championship and maintaining continuity with their drivers will only aid the development programme of the Silver Arrows going into next season.