Do you happen to remember reading my editorial on Valtterin Bottas and how he may have outgrown Williams F1 and reached the ceiling of his race craft development? If you didn’t read it, you can do so right here.
Today’s article from Autosport speaks directly to what I was speaking of in my editorial piece. While some may have felt I was daft in my observations in that piece, I think I’m pointed int eh right direction.
Moving from a mid-field team to a title-winning team is a big change and allows for serious growth and potential. So much so that Bottas won his first race last weekend. What has it been like for Valtteri?
“It was something I decided from the very beginning,” Bottas told Autosport.
“There is a lot I can learn from them and they will help me to learn how the team works.
“Every human is different and you work differently with everyone.
“The team has a different kind of approach to meetings and new systems and new terms.
“So I had to kind of adapt into how this team works.
“That was the one reason why I did not really push for anyone from Williams to come with me.
“I wanted to start with the experienced people here, because they know this team the best.”
It’s also interesting to note, as Autosport did, that he has no reservations on telling it like it is. He’s a straightforward guy and there’s no reason to be hesitant in telling the team what’s right or wrong..
“I always say things very straight,” he said.
“If I feel something is not quite right, I always keep my honest opinion. The team appreciates it.
“For sure Lewis [Hamilton] has much more experience with this team and with this people and the car, but that’s the only thing I can do, to give always my honest opinion about everything and whatever can be improved from what I think.”
Valtteri is now starting to hone his craft in a team with resources to nurture the final pieces of the racing puzzle for him. As I said in the editorial, Valtteri may have reached the peak of his potential at Williams and now can get the final polishing on his race craft and complete package with Mercedes.
“This team knows basically how to win,” he said.
“It is so hungry for the wins and for success, and everyone looks very upbeat [when winning] and disappointed when it’s not a good day.
“It’s very tricky in a midfield team or a team behind the bigger teams to have that kind of mentality.
“If you have a good result, you might be fourth or maybe third sometimes. That’s a success.
“Also obviously Mercedes has big resources and many more people.
“That means you can focus 100% on different projects at the same time.
“In the smaller team you can compromise, you can focus on something for a while and then something else later.
“But when it’s more people with more resources, you can focus on many different things at the same time, and that makes car development quicker and everything works more seamlessly.”
It’s a good sign that he understands all the differences before him. All the different procedures, approaches and resources combine to make a much more robust program in which he can now grow and put the final touches on his race craft.
As I said before, I’m not sure this means that Bottas will win the championship but if he is a driver capable of doing so, then this is his time and this is the team to do it with.
Hat Tip: Autosport