2016 Formula One champion Nico Rosberg believes former Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton can surpass Michael Schumacher’s records for the number of wins and number of titles after becoming a five-time champion at the Mexican Grand Prix.
Hamilton’s fourth-place finish at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez was enough to secure his fifth world title, moving level with Juan Manuel Fangio and to within two of Schumacher. He is also within striking distance of Schumacher’s record race win tally of 91, with Hamilton currently sitting on 71 grand prix victories.
Rosberg — who beat Hamilton to the 2016 title — reckons he can now look to become F1’s all-time greatest driver by breaking Schumacher’s records.
“For Lewis now, with five titles, unbelievable,” Rosberg said in a video on his official YouTube channel. “He’s got five titles, it’s crazy! It’s crazy to think, and equalling Fangio — crazy. He can seriously go for Schumacher’s records now. He’s got two more years on the contract, and Schumi is only two titles away, 20 race wins away, even that’s possible in two years so amazing.
“It’s amazing. He can really try to become statistically the best of all-time, which is unreal, but it is a possibility, and I’m sure he’s going to be motivated by that.”
Rosberg also praised his former team for how it dealt with the pressure applied by Ferrari and the Italian team’s impressive upturn in performance in 2018.
“Today’s race — I mean of course it was not the best way to finish the season for Mercedes, a race like, but whatever, who cares,” Rosberg added. “In the end the big picture counts. After the midway part of the season it really went two ways: Sebastian really struggling, making some mistakes, his team making mistakes as well. Mercedes and Lewis were getting everything perfect, it just completely went apart in a big way. That’s why it’s now such a big difference in the championship, and it’s finished so early.”