Valtteri Bottas is under a ball of fire at Mercedes. Fans and Pundits alike are calling for his head after his showing in Sakhir. Even though it was George Russell’s debut race in the W11, he was outclassing the Finn for most of the race. If it wasn’t for a ‘Colossal F**k’ in the pits, the Englishman was crossing the chequered flag wellhead of him.
Amidst all this, Mercedes Team Principal Toto Wolff is trying to reduce the heat on Bottas. Going up against the greatest driver of this era in Lewis Hamilton is no simple task. Hence he has had to settle for being the second-best every time. Throwing all the weight behind him, Wolff said –
“He’s a hard, resilient guy. Losing a title is not something that is easy to digest, and it’s not expected to be easy to digest. But he has the unconditional support within the team, and I think from year to year it makes him more eager to win.”
“Winning against the best guy could probably be the biggest satisfaction that a racing driver could have. But that it takes its toll.”
The young drivers’ test is a natural opportunity for F2 and F3 racers to experience…
Wolff was quick to point the support Bottas had from everyone within his circle ahead of Abu Dhabi GP, “All of us, I think it’s not only me, he has this unconditional support from everybody in the team. I think he’s able to pick himself up, and he has a family that does, and then he has his teammates, all of us.”
Is Valtteri Bottas nearing the end at Mercedes?
Yes, his journey with the ‘Silver Arrows’ won’t last beyond the end of next season. He has a contract for next season. And the team too will prefer to let him continue, given their dominance in the turbo-hybrid era. However, when new regulations set in 2022, they would want Russell next to Hamilton. Or maybe pass the baton over to him completely.
In conclusion, it is Russell’s destiny to drive for Mercedes, eventually. He put on a remarkable display of talent in Sakhir. Even if they might want to stick with Bottas for now, they know that the Briton is their driver for the future.