"Bottas performs optimally because he knows that Ocon is waiting for his chance"

16-05-2019 11:14
by Matt Gretton
Bottas performs optimally because he knows that Ocon is waiting for his chance

Valtteri Bottas is ensuring he pushes Lewis Hamilton to the maximum in the early part of the 2019 Formula 1 season. Last year, Hamilton developed an early lead which forced Bottas to play second fiddle.

This year, he has Mercedes junior driver Esteban Ocon sitting in the back of the garage, waiting for a seat to free up. Former Formula 1 driver Marc Surer believes this is the main reason why Bottas has improved his performances.

“It's a bit like with Rosberg. That he suddenly shows that he is not just the driver who is standing next to Lewis Hamilton but really doing something. He shows that he knows what to do since he knows that someone is watching in the garage," Surer said during his Mercedes analysis.

“The pressure is completely with Bottas and he knows that he can only keep his place if he constantly fights with Lewis for the win. I had the idea that Bottas was better in the car than Lewis, just like in 2016 with Rosberg and Hamilton.

"Anyway, in Barcelona, we saw that Lewis can still be dissatisfied and can drop stitches. You notice that if Valtteri is really strong, Lewis is far from happy."

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