Williams' signing of 20 year-old Nico Rosberg to race for the squad next season perhaps raised a few eyebrows but Mark Webber is sure the youngster will be a strong teammate. Rosberg will be Webber's third partner at Williams, after the...
Williams' signing of 20 year-old Nico Rosberg to race for the squad next season perhaps raised a few eyebrows but Mark Webber is sure the youngster will be a strong teammate. Rosberg will be Webber's third partner at Williams, after the Australian first raced alongside Nick Heidfeld and then Antonio Pizzonia when Heidfeld was out of action at the end of the 2005 season.
"He knows what he's got to do and he will deliver. I'm very, very sure of that," Webber told Reuters in regard to Rosberg. "He's ready to go...he's done well to get the race seat and I think it's something he deserves and it's good for the team. In all the testing he's done he doesn't make any mistakes and he's been very solid."
"No-one can look in the crystal ball and see the end result, who knows? Jenson (Button) was very young and did a fantastic job as was Kimi (Raikkonen). Those guys were right there right away with very limited experience. Nico is of a similar level I suppose, so he'll be strong."
Rosberg was this year's inaugural GP2 champion and tested with Williams on a regular basis. He and Pizzonia appeared to be the only two drivers in contention for the race seat and Williams was keen on the son of former champion Keke from the outset.
Webber believes Rosberg is ready to prove himself in competition. "It's always hard to say how the season will unfold but I think he's been chosen totally on his merits and his ability to be quick and competitive," Webber commented. "If he's not ready for Formula One, who is out there that is?"
"He's done everything he can, he's ticked all the boxes and dominated the championship this year and done a super job for us testing the car. He's totally ready to go. There's not a person on the planet who know what's going to happen next year in terms of the competitiveness of all the teams and the cars, but so far he's done what he can."
Like many other teams, Williams is preparing to start winter testing at the end of this month and will be on track at Barcelona from November 29th, when the Cosworth V8 engine will make its debut. Whether Pizzonia will continue as the team's official test driver or if a new tester will be appointed has not yet been confirmed.