Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff says he hopes Valtteri Bottas can pick up the race win in Abu Dhabi after a season of misfortune and playing back-up to world champion teammate Lewis Hamilton made him a peripheral figure in the 2018 title race.
Bottas missed out on an almost certain race victory in Baku, suffering a puncture with just a few laps remaining of the race and a late safety car in China denied him the win in Shanghai.
Currently, the Finn is without a win in 2018 and is the only driver in the top three teams without one, something that Wolff is hoping will change at the Yas Marina season finale.
“The championship pressure is off so we can look at this as one race where we can really go for broke,” said Wolff.
“Our Silver Arrow has won 10 races so far this season and we all want to add one more to that score – especially Valtteri, who has lost out on wins this season through bad luck and team orders.”
Mercedes has taken every available win in Abu Dhabi since the start of the hybrid era in 2014, something that the Mercedes man is hoping is a good sign for his driver ahead of the race.
“We have taken four wins in a row at Yas Marina, although it’s a track with a lot of slow and medium speed corners. We’ve made some good steps forward when it comes to our car’s performance on similar tracks, so we’re confident that we can perform strongly in Abu Dhabi as well, and end this incredible 2018 season on a high.”