Relationship between Bottas and Mercedes at an all-time low? 'Needs a hug'

08-06-2021 06:35 | Updated: 08-06-2021 08:37
F1 News
Relationship between Bottas and Mercedes at an all-time low? 'Needs a hug'

The relationship between Valtteri Bottas and Mercedes seems to have reached an all-time low. Not only was the Finn's performance disappointing in Azerbaijan, but with George Russell warming up in the wings, his confidence seems to be dwindling by the day.

Bottas has to prove himself every year at Mercedes to secure another seat for the following year, and in 2021 the motivation for this seems to have run out a bit. While Lewis Hamilton is competing for the world title, Bottas is either unlucky or simply lacks speed. Russell has made no secret of his desire to take Bottas' seat, and the question is, how far has it gone?

Valtteri under pressure

''We are always honest with our drivers. They have the preference. It has always been like that and it will always be like that. We haven't made a decision yet. Valtteri has had so much bad luck this year, you can hardly believe it. We will certainly take that into account in the decision'', Toto Wolff told

Toto Wolff's predecessor, Norbert Haug, views Bottas' declining performance with members' eyes. ''You have to give a driver a hug and take care of him. He clearly has a problem at the moment, he hasn't suddenly forgotten how to drive. He was good in Monaco and completely wrong in Baku. You have to stabilise that,'' Haug told Sky Germany.

Wolff points the finger at Bottas

Yet there seems to be more to it as well, with Wolff pointing the finger at Bottas after the Monaco Grand Prix. He had not positioned his car perfectly in the pit lane and this had contributed to the failure of the pit stop. A big blow for Bottas who did not understand that. He had done nothing wrong.

And that turned out to be the case because in Azerbaijan Wolff backed down. ''That was my mistake. When I analysed the pit stop I said he went a few centimetres too far, without really identifying that as a mistake. Valtteri actually turned out to be very precise with the pit stop. He made no mistake in that whole thing, it was our problem,'' the Mercedes team boss concluded.

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