Nicholas Latifi chooses to race under No.6 in F1

Nicholas Latifi is leaving Force India to join Williams in 2019. Xavier Bonilla/NurPhoto via Getty Images

New Williams driver Nicholas Latifi has chosen to races under No.6 in Formula One, citing Toronto's area codes and musician Drake as the reasons.

The No.6 was most recently used by 2016 world champion Nico Rosberg, but under the FIA's regulations numbers become available again two years after a driver's last race. As a result, Latifi was free to choose the number for his career and the Toronto native gave the following reasons on his personal website.

"The main reason is that 6 is so closely linked to Toronto," he said. "It's where I'm from, where I was raised, and the city I'm proud to be representing.

"Toronto is widely referred to as 'The 6', which is partly down to Drake, who's also from Toronto. He mentions the name in one of his early songs, and one of his albums was originally called 'Views from the 6'.

"Other 6 links are that Toronto was once divided into six districts, and that the two telephone area codes for Toronto start or finish with a six. "For all these reasons the name has just stuck; anyone who's from North America knows what 'The 6' is - especially if they listen to Drake...

"It also happens to be the number I used for three out of my four seasons in Formula 2. Although that was more by chance, as DAMS was given 5 and 6 because of the finishing positions in the championship. But as soon as we had those numbers, I knew immediately which one I wanted!"

Latifi has been signed by Williams to replace Robert Kubica this year after he finished second in the Formula 2 championship in 2019. He will join George Russell at the British team this season.