Nico Rosberg believes that Extreme E would be a good fit for Sebastian Vettel as the four-time Formula 1 world champion heads for retirement from the top level of circuit racing.
Rosberg quit F1 himself at the end of 2016 and has since gone on to manage the Rosberg X Racing team which won the inaugural XE season in 2021 and is on course to wrap up a second title later this year.
“Sebastian would be an awesome fit for Extreme E because it combines racing with his passion for the environment,” Rosberg told DirtFish. “So that would be super-cool.
“In fact, I’ve written to him about it to see if his interest will grow,” he revealed, adding that while Vettel hasn’t shown any real indication of interest yet, “ it would make a lot of sense for him to take a look”.
Aston Martin F1 driver Vettel has become increasingly vocal about environmental and social issues in recent years, something that ties in with XE’s own messaging.
“It’s nice to see Sebastian being so keen on this topic, which is important to all of us, and really kind of following in my footsteps as well because I’ve been doing this now for six years since I stopped racing that I’ve been dedicated to environmental issues with all of my entrepreneurship so it’s really nice to see how he’s following in my footsteps,” Rosberg said.
Another parallel between the pair is that both have young families, and Rosberg says that XE’s spaced out schedule – five events across eight months in 2022 – provides him with an ideal balance of family and racing time. Rosberg also said that the enjoyment of his post-F1 roles means he isn’t missing being in the driving seat.
“Driving is a thing of the past now. I’ve really turned that page,” he insisted. “It was a beautiful time, and now it’s different.
“What I also like about XE is it’s not a full-time, whole life commitment, because there’s not so many races.
“I couldn’t imagine myself being in a team-leading role in F1, ever, because it’s a full-life commitment with 24 races and it’s really every single day, all day long, and traveling around the world. That’s not for me any more.
“I’ve done it as a racing driver, and I definitely don’t want to do that again, because I just enjoy the freedom that I have now. So that’s why XE also works well from that point of view.”
Nevertheless, Rosberg hasn’t ruled out expanding his own RXR operation into other sustainable motorsport series such as the proposed Extreme H series, a hydrogen-powered sibling to XE that plans to be run alongside it from 2024; and E1, an electric powerboat series founded by the same group of people.
“Well I’m open-minded of course, but at the moment we’re very focused on XE because it’s a great platform and we want to continue dominating the championship in the way that we do.
“It’s also a great start for me as a team boss for two years now,” he said.
“To have such success straight away, I’m really proud of that and thankful to everyone in the team for making that possible.”