Formula 1

Lewis Hamilton: All smiles.

Nico Rosberg congratulates Lewis Hamilton on fifth world title

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Lewis Hamilton registered his fifth world championship on Sunday marking back-to-back titles and equalling the Argentine legend Juan Manuel Fangio's tally in the process.

He is now only two behind the racing icon Michael Schumacher's haul of seven.

The Mexican Grand Prix this weekend may not have been the strongest of performances from Mercedes, but securing fourth place meant Hamilton did enough to outlast title challenger and arch-rival Sebastian Vettel, who finished second.

Nico Rosberg, the former teammate of Hamilton, led the tributes to congratulate the Brit on the remarkable achievement after a tough campaign, going head-to-head with Ferrari throughout the season for the highest honours.

The 2016 world champion commended the entire Silver Arrows outfit for their efforts and gave his views on the race as well as the season on the whole.

“Race is over, Lewis is world champion, really, really impressive season. So, congrats Lewis, congrats Toto, congrats Niki and congrats to the whole team Mercedes," said the smiling Rosberg.

“You all really deserve it, phenomenal job, especially this year because Ferrari, on average, maybe even had the better car.

“To go with such pressure, to come so strong through the middle part of the season, develop the car so strong, amazing effort.

“Today's race was not the best way to finish the season for Mercedes in a race like that, but whatever, it doesn't matter - who cares.

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“In the end, the big picture counts. I hope everybody is going to have a great party tonight!”

The 33-year-old shared his insights on what was the turning point that swung the momentum in Mercedes’ and Hamilton’s favour.

"After the midway part of the season it really went two ways: Sebastian really struggling, making mistakes, his team making mistakes as well,” continued Rosberg.

"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."

The German star is of the opinion that Hamilton should now aim for Schumacher’s record, a target which would indeed be a great source of motivation for the British driver.

Rosberg said: “For Lewis now, with five titles, unbelievable. It's crazy to think, and equalling [Juan Manuel] Fangio [as a five-time world champion] - 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.

“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.”

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Nico Rosberg
Lewis Hamilton
Formula 1

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