There’s a part of me that feels Valtteri Bottas was in a “nothing to lose” situation this season but after reading a story over at Autosport today, perhaps this year was the year of desperation and 2019 will be instead.
“This sport is funny, you never know what happens in the future,” Bottas said.
“But I think the right mentality for me to approach next year is like I have nothing to lose.
“I just want to go for it and drive like I stole it, like it’s my last race, last day ever. That’s a good plan.”
I recall Nico Rosberg saying to win the title, he had to reach levels that he simply didn’t want to commit to in the future and he left Mercedes because of it. There’s no doubt winning a title is tough and requires a completely different level, especially when your teammate is Lewis Hamilton.
With Esteban Ocon hovering around the Mercedes garage with no seat on the grid, Valtteri may be facing his final season with the team if he doesn’t deliver but the question is, what does that look like?
“In this sport, when you’re kind of sometimes thinking of yourself, you’re thinking all kind of different things,” said Bottas.
“The main thing is always the thought that I’ve got to be the strongest, and I’ve never told myself that I’m not good enough to do this.
“Even though I feel disappointed for the season, I know that I can do much more than what this season proves, and that is the main thing.”
Does he need to beat Lewis in order to secure another contract extension or would finishing right behind Lewis suffice? Some fans have claimed they believe Valtteri will be replaced mid-season by Ocon while others believe he has submitted to the number 2 role and will be kept for this role and the harmony it brings to the team.
I’ll gamble and say that Valtteri will raise his game but I’m not sure his game will remain at Mercedes beyond 2019.