HomeFormula 1Let's Not Undermine Valtteri Bottas For The French Grand...

Let’s Not Undermine Valtteri Bottas For The French Grand Prix

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A few minutes back, Valtteri Bottas topped the free practice at Le Castellet. The famous Finnish driver led teammate, Lewis Hamilton as both Mercedes cars dominated the proceedings in the second free practice at the famous French circuit. The Ferraris were nowhere as close as the Silver Arrows.

This is where Bottas’ highly understated enigma looms large

At a time where one thought that Grand Prix racing this weekend would be only about the ensuing Ferrari versus Mercedes saga, a controversy that began in Montreal and gathered steam immediately thereof, the other Mercedes driver reminds us that racing isn’t only about “Hammertime” or the man behind the famous “finger waging” celebration.

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Valtteri Bottas was one of the unluckiest drivers of the last season.

Valtteri Bottas
Last year, Bottas had no wins, this year, he’s already got 2 (The Zimbabwe Mail)

Back in 2018, there were no race wins, only a few podium finishes and lots of heartbreaks; car failures and the infamous ‘second driver treatment.’
There were moments where he had to allow his more prominent teammate to go through. We saw that at Hockenheimring.

We also saw plenty of that in contests such as Sochi.

Hamilton won and Bottas was once again, the lone figure staring at the top step of the podium from the second spot. He might have sipped the champagne, but pop opening it was a thrill that belonged to the successful 2018 world champion back then.
Yet, somehow, Valtteri Bottas was able to chin up and in so doing, managed to set as many as 7 fastest laps in the last season, the most by any driver in 2018.
Do the math and you understand how Bottas, formerly called “Hamilton’s wingman” wasn’t just a side character in the Mercedes team in their memorable campaign.
He was his own man; a special talent, unflustered to a good extent by all the wrong that was happening to him.

Remember the ill-fated tire puncture at Baku?

Perhaps, one’s not wrong when it’s proclaimed that there are drivers, and then there are the Finns. They just happen to be programmed in a way that the ‘Sisu’ inside them kicks in to take things in their stride.
Yet, all that said, few would’ve imagined the stylish fashion in which Bottas- second only to Lewis Hamilton this season- would spring back to top form.
For someone who was nowhere where race wins were concerned in 2018, would grab the checkered flag in the season-opener at Melbourne, home to the Australian Grand Prix.
Since then, Valtteri Bottas would feature consistently on the podium, be it the night safari at Bahrain, the 1000th Formula 1 Grand Prix at Shanghai, China, the bull-run at Spain, the charming principality at Monaco, or the walled city of Baku.
Central to Bottas’ consistency would be the enviable feat that Mercedes would garner this season, a fantastic 1-2 finish in each of the first six races as seen so far, a record that they never previously scaled hitherto 2019.
So this weekend, as racing returns to a famous European circuit, one that had fallen to oblivion for a good decade before making a return in 2018, Valtteri Bottas would be keen to explore his chances at the 53-lap contest.

What’s more?

Valtteri Bottas
Source: BBC

The Finnish driver, with 133 points against his name, will be keen to improve his 2018 run at Circuit Paul Ricard, where he failed to land on the podium. With Montreal having produced a poor race by this Finn’s exceptionally high standards, can the force with Silver Arrows produce gold at France?
For starters, he would love to add to his tally of 2 race wins. Should he achieve that, he’ll ensure that Lewis doesn’t get his sixth victory of the season. That said, there’s a lot to play for. Whatever either of the Mercedes drivers does to win shall further increase the pressure on Ferrari, who are anyways reeling.

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Dev Tyagi
Dev Tyagi
Dravid believer, admirer of - the square drive, Drew Barrymore, Germany, Finland, Electric Mobility, simplicity and the power of the written word! Absolutely admire contributing to KyroSports

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