Bottas not being blocked from Mercedes meetings

Date published: October 12 2021 - Finley Crebolder

Valtteri Bottas celebrates with his team. Turkey October 2021

He may be leaving at the end of the season, but Valtteri Bottas isn’t being blocked from any Mercedes meetings as far as he’s aware.

After spending five seasons together, the Finn and the German team will bid one another farewell at the end of the 2021 campaign.

From 2022, he’ll instead be driving for Alfa Romeo with Williams driver George Russell taking his spot as Lewis Hamilton’s team-mate.

Often when a driver is guaranteed to leave his current team, they’ll begin to involve him less and give him less information.

However, the Finn says that this hasn’t happened with him and that nothing has changed since the announcement was made in September.

“Yes, I’m in every meeting that I’ve been in before, in these five years,” he said in the post-race press conference in Turkey, following a question from Autosport.

“If there are other meetings, I don’t know about those, so for me, everything is normal!”

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After something of a drought, Bottas took his first win of the season last time out at the Turkish Grand Prix with a dominant display.

It wasn’t the perfect day for Mercedes though with Lewis Hamilton finishing P5 after a strategy disagreement between himself and the team lost him the chance of a podium.

Given that he’s the one locked in a title fight and Bottas is leaving at the end of the season, many would think that Toto Wolff and co wouldn’t have been too happy with the team result at Istanbul Park.

From what he could tell though, the Finn thinks they were happy that he won and in good spirits.

 

“I think the team has been good,” he added.

“Nothing has really changed, everything is normal and the team has a good spirit overall and we’re really motivated for the rest of the year and working hard as always.

“I only saw them from the podium and when I got out of the car it was good, obviously. Yeah, everyone seemed happy.”

He feels that the race was one of his best performances in a long time, and says the fact that he’s leaving is partly why he was able to produce it due to the fact that he’s under less pressure now.