Leading the charge of a bright crop of twenty-something Formula One drivers, Lewis Hamilton named Nico Rosberg as a possible team-mate next season, replacing Fernando Alonso at McLaren.
Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg
However, Rosberg insists he is happy at Williams, where his father Keke won the 1982 World Title. “I’m not going anywhere, at least for another season, and hopefully for longer than that,” he said.
“What Lewis achieved last season has got all us younger drivers thinking. If he can do it, then so can we. It’s a big positive for me. I certainly compare to him. In karting we beat each other all the time and I know I can compete with Lewis.One year he finished up as European champion with me as his team-mate in second and Robert Kubica third. And we all know that Heikki Kovalainen is a top driver, too.
“Of course, it looks like Lewis has a better car than the rest of us at the moment. Next season will still see the McLarens and Ferraris dominate, but I’m hoping the rest of the next tier of teams can push them harder, and that Williams can compete consistently with BMWSauber. We should have beaten Renault in the constructors’ championship last season, so our plan in 2008 is to be up there challenging for third place.
“I’m really excited because I believe F1 will come to be dominated by my generation very soon. I was the first of us to arrive in the sport, and Lewis is now ahead of the rest of us, but I believe there will be a great rivalry in the next few years involving Lewis, myself, Robert and Heikki, with maybe Sebastian Vettel, too, joining us because he did really well when he started racing midway through last season.
“The sport needs these sort of rivalries and I hope people will come to talk of us one day like they used to talk about the great rivalries involving Alain Prost, Ayrton Senna, Nigel Mansell and Nelson Piquet.”
The new season promises to be one characterized by new talent coming through, although Hamilton must be favourite to take the title this time.