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Rosberg stuns F1 with retirement bombshell

Nico Rosberg

In Vienna, one of Europe's cultural capitals, the Formula 1 champion and a favorite driver for many fans, shocked reporters and journalists all over the world when he announced his retirement. Through the hard work, the pain, the sacrifices, this has been my target.

Rosberg's battles with Hamilton, his boyhood friend and rival in karting, have lit up the last couple of seasons - and provided plenty of headlines - and he said that too had taken its toll.

"'Nico, ' I told him". It has been reported that Niki Lauda mentioned that they certainly will need a driver for the first test of the new vehicle in February and they can assure us that it will happen earlier because whoever it is we have to get trained on the simulator.

Asked at the Ferrari Finals in Daytona whether he had been in touch with Mercedes, Vettel replied: "I think it is not a big secret".

"It was such a dominant season really - even better than previous year", said Costa.

The German driver beat teammate Lewis Hamilton by five points to win his first title and during the prize giving ceremony announced his retirement from the sport. But in the end, I see it similarly, if he finds it right, that's what he should do.

Drivers like Pascal Wehrlein, Valtteri Bottas, and Esteban Ocon, however, could be easier choices to lure to Mercedes.

"The third path I mentioned is the one I like least".

Nico Rosberg said that had he come up short in the championship this year, he would have carried on next year. Hamilton is perhaps different from Rosberg in that he lives for driving while Rosberg felt he reached the summit by winning the world title, and is content to go out at the top.

Who should replace Rosberg in 2017?

Often, it was the moments when Nico Rosberg had his racing suit rolled halfway down that he appeared most at ease during his Formula One career.

"On Sunday morning in Abu Dhabi, I understood that it could be my last race and that feeling cleared my head prior to the start".

Vettel, who won his titles with Red Bull between 2010 and 2013 and is still only 29, said Rosberg's decision was a courageous one because it was easier to carry on.

Governing body FIA president Jean Todt said he was "very surprised, as I'm sure everyone is, but Nico has demonstrated across the year that he is extremely fearless".