Lauda: Bottas has two advantages

Date published: February 6 2017

Niki Lauda reckons Valtteri Bottas is arriving at Mercedes at the perfect time as the new regulations will level the playing field with Lewis Hamilton.

This season Bottas will take on the daunting task of partnering three-time World Champion Hamilton at Mercedes.

The Finn has been signed as Nico Rosberg’s replacement after the German shocked the motor sport work when he announced his retirement just days after winning the 2016 World title.

Lauda, though, feels there are a few positives in Bottas’ favour as not only is he joining a top team, which makes the transition that much easier, but the new aerodynamic rules mean the cars are new for everyone, not just those swapping teams.

“He does not have much time to settle in, everything is new for him and us,” the Mercedes non-executive chairman told Auto Motor und Sport.

“But Bottas has two advantages: he comes into a top team and that will make it easier to get everything right from the beginning.

“And this year we will also drive with completely new cars.

“They is also new for Lewis, so Lewis can’t build on a car he already knows.

“Both drivers can develop the car from the beginning, so that it will suit them both.”