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Images from the 2019 F1 Austrian Grand Prix

F1: Bottas on a mission following Austria podium

Jul 012019

Valtteri Bottas is on a mission. A mission to chase down his team mate and ensure his impressive start to 2019 doesn't fizzle out.

The Finn started the season with two victories in the opening four races, with his Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport teammate, Lewis Hamilton, winning the other two.

However, since then reigning world champion Lewis has since opened up a gap at the top of the drivers' championship with six wins out of nine races, and Valtteri now knows he must start chipping into his teammate's lead, if he isn't to fall too far behind.

Speaking after his most recent podium (P3) at last weekend’s Austrian Grand Prix, Valtteri said: "I am pretty hard on myself, so to date I would rate my performances as 7.5 (out of 10), whereas if you would have asked me few races ago I would have said 8.5. I need to minimise the mistakes in qualifying and extract everything in Q3; that can always change Sunday's result.

"Another thing has been my pace in the race. That is still where Lewis has the upper hand in a few places. That is the one I need to make the most improvements on. In the last couple of races I have not managed to get everything out of the car I could have done and it could have been a different result if I had done that.

"For me, it is about getting back to that level and making sure I do that and make a step forward. It would be silly to let this good start to the season slip. Lewis is one of the best ever in F1 and performing at such a high level that it is not easy to beat him but in motorsport, you always want to beat your teammate.”

The Finn joined the Silver Arrows in 2017 and since then has formed a fantastic partnership with Lewis. Most recently he finished third in the Austrian Grand Prix, and now goes into the team's home race - the British Grand Prix - with a renewed focus.


He added: "Lewis and I have a very open relationship with the team and share data and set-up. It is open both ends. I have learned from Lewis as a driver. It would be silly for me not to look at his driving style and his set up and I am sure he has looked at my set up as well.


"We both come to every race weekend knowing there will be an opportunity to win and no other place I would rather be. You want to be at a top team and there are bigger stakes than being at the back. You are fighting for the podium and every mistakes cost more. I think that is more fun.


"I am fortunate to be part of a top team because all the drivers would love to have my seat. You always want to be in a better car, that's only natural.”