Hakkinen backs Rosberg to break records


Two-time Formula One world champion Mika Hakkinen has backed Nico Rosberg to break records en route to the title after his strong start to the new season.

Rosberg's win in the Chinese Grand Prix on Sunday made it three straight to start the campaign and six in a row stretching back to the last term.

The German, who has missed out to Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton in the battle for the title in each of the past two years, leads the defending world champion by 36 points in the standings. 

And Hakkinen - champion in 1998 and 1999 - believes the confidence gained from those early triumphs can inspire Rosberg to a historic title-winning campaign.

"What he's been doing, absolutely fantastic performance, fantastic driving from Nico," Hakkinen told Omnisport.

"The team has done fantastic work again this year, bringing such a powerful and quick car again.

"This could be Nico's year winning a world championship, what he has done now so far, it is very unusual and I think he is going to break records, winning so many races in a row.

"Winning these races in a row like this gives him massive confidence, which is a great feeling because it gives the confidence for the mechanics, for the team, confidence for himself.

"I feel the confidence will bring him more power to win more races and win the world championship he's looking for.

"The season is really, really long and it needs a lot of physical effort, psychological effort. It's too early to start talking about world championships but certainly he is in a fantastic driving mode at the moment."