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Nico Rosberg say he's ecstatic to get his maiden F1 world title over the line with second place in Abu Dhabi to beat Lewis Hamilton by five points as he revels in the 'unreal' feeling of being world champion.
After holding second place from the start in the 2016 title decider, Rosberg had to find a way past Max Verstappen on the alternative strategy and then fend off the charging Sebastian Vettel and Red Bulls at the end of the race while Hamilton ahead of him slowed the pace up front.
Rosberg held his nerve knowing a podium finish would be enough and duly secured second place behind Hamilton to clinch the 2016 F1 world crown by five points.
Reacting to his achievement, Rosberg relief was palpable as he relished the celebrations of emulating his father Keke who won the 1982 F1 world title.
“That was definitely not the most enjoyable race I have ever had,” Rosberg said. “With Max Verstappen at the beginning and those guys coming up at the end it was not very enjoyable in those last laps so I am very, very glad it is over.
“I am unbelievably ecstatic and I want give the victory to my wife and to our daughter. I will thank everyone else afterwards, this is unreal.
“I am very, very proud to have done the same feat as my dad has achieved, he is coming here so it will be exciting to see him.”
READ: Nico Rosberg clinches the 2016 F1 world title
Rosberg also paid tribute to Mercedes team-mate Hamilton for his challenge throughout the season having become the fifth driver in F1 history to take a world title off a team-mate.
“I want to say congratulations to Lewis as well," he said. "You did a great season and were massively quick as always, so congratulations as it is always tough to beat you."
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