VICTORY IN BRAZIL: Despite Mercedes' Nico Rosberg's (right) victory at the 2014 Brazilian GP over team mate Lewis Hamilton, the title will be decided at the Abu Dhabi finale. Image: AP/ Ricardo Mazalan
SAO PAULO, Brazil - Bernie Ecclestone reckons Lewis Hamilton would be a better champion for Formula 1 than Mercedes team mate and title rival Nico Rosberg.
The 2014 championship will be decided in Abu Dhabi on November 23 with the Mercedes drivers the only two in contention and everything to play for with double points awarded from the final race for the first time in the sport's history.
Ecclestone told the official formula1.com website, in an interview carried out at the 2014 US GP (Nov 2) but only published on Sunday (Nov 9), that at the start of the season he had expected Rosberg to be the winner.
'MORE WIDELY KNOWN THAN NICO'
Ecclestone said: "I thought that would probably suit the team better. In my position I thought it would be better for F1 to have a champion who can speak several languages.
"I thought that if there was going to be any help, which I am certain that there hasn't been, then maybe there would be a bit more support forthcoming from a German team for a German driver. So, yes, I was sure that Nico would do it.
"Privately, I thought Lewis would be a good champion. He is more widely known around the world than Nico. Consequently, he would be the better champion for the sport."
Ecclestone said he was sure Hamilton had far more recognition around the world than Rosberg: "Most people haven't heard of Nico. Therefore, Lewis would be the better champion as far as this sport is concerned."
Hamilton had won 10 races to Rosberg's four ahead of the 2014 Brazilian Grand Prix (Nov 9), the penultimate round of the championship; he was second in Sao Paulo so the number remains.
Rosberg has been better in qualifying, however, with 10 poles so far through 2014.