MANAMA (Reuters) - Nico Rosberg’s Formula One trophy collection doubled in size after the Mercedes driver celebrated the 16th grand prix victory of his career, and fifth in a row, in Bahrain on Sunday.
As the German explained after circuit bosses presented him with a small replica of the winner’s trophy, he only has one other to put next to it back home in Monaco.
“I don’t have many trophies,” he grinned. “It saves me 20,000 pounds ($28,440.00) to replicate a trophy.”
It is safe to say Rosberg, down to earth and personable, is unlikely to need a trophy room any time soon despite his amazing run of success on the racetrack since last November.
“(Mercedes motorsport director) Toto (Wolff) gave me my 2013 Monaco winner’s trophy because it was very special for me and that’s it. I don’t have any others, now I do.
“They know that the team always takes the real one (trophy), so they decided to make a small one for me. It’s very kind of them,” he smiled, holding up his second pot with pride.
The millionaire driver can afford as many replicas as he wants, and prices vary depending on how detailed the trophies are, but Rosberg cannot see the point in splashing out.
A title trophy, after losing out to triple champion team mate Lewis Hamilton in the past two years, may be the exception.
“I might... (get one made),” he said, before the mental warning lights came on. “No, I am not thinking about a season. I am going step-by-step, race-by-race and enjoying the moment and wanting to make the most of it and win more races.”
Rosberg could join his Finnish father Keke as a world champion but, with the season stretching to a record 21 races, it is still very early days.
Rosberg is 17 points clear of Hamilton, who was third on Sunday after a second-place finish in Australia, and leading the standings for the first time since 2014.
Never before has the German strung together such a run, even if the three wins that ended last season came after Hamilton had won his third title and are just history now.
“I haven’t changed my approach in any way,” he said. “I was flat out last year and it just didn’t go my way often. Now in the first two races it’s just gone much more my way. That’s it.”
($1 = 0.7032 pounds)
Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Ken Ferris