Bottas “in no rush” to discuss new Mercedes F1 contract

Valtteri Bottas says he is “in no rush” to discuss a new Formula 1 contract with Mercedes beyond the end of this year.

Bottas “in no rush” to discuss new Mercedes F1 contract

Bottas is entering his fifth season racing for Mercedes in 2021, having helped the team win the constructors’ championship in each of his past four years alongside Lewis Hamilton.

But the Finn has always been re-signed on rolling one-year contracts at Mercedes, with his existing deal set to expire at the end of this season.

With team-mate Hamilton also on a one-year deal currently, Mercedes has maximum flexibility in the driver market for 2022 with two vacant seats.

PLUS: How Hamilton's one-year deal opens up the 2022 driver market

Following a protracted negotiation period over his 2019 contract, Bottas said last year that he wanted a quick resolution to talks, with a new deal for 2021 being announced in early August.

But heading into the new season, Bottas said he was in no hurry to open talks over a deal for 2022, acknowledging the advantage the team has by keeping two seats free.

“I’m honestly in no rush for that,” Bottas said following the launch of Mercedes’ new W12 car ahead of the 2021 season.

“I kind of get it. If the team has the opportunity for the big change coming in 2022, to have options, to choose both of their drivers, I think it’s good for the team.

“But yeah, honestly, from my side, no rush really. I’m just full gas for the season, and trying to get to my goals.

“Eventually it will be a talking point. Not quite yet.”

 

Bottas’s future is set to be one of the key focus points of F1’s driver market in 2021 as Mercedes considers where to place star junior George Russell for next year.

Russell is out of contract with Williams at the end of this season, and impressed during his sole appearance for Mercedes at last year’s Sakhir Grand Prix, where he deputised for the COVID-struck Hamilton.

Bottas has failed to beat Hamilton in the championship through any of their four years together so far, and admitted it would be “disappointing” if he never got the better of his team-mate over a season.

“Of course, in a way it would be disappointing, because I’ve been team-mates with Lewis now several years, and obviously every year that is the goal,” Bottas said.

“But what would be more disappointing is if I look back and realise things that I could have done better or I should have put more effort.

“I don’t want to leave any what ifs after this year, that’s the ultimate goal. If I give everything I have, if I maximise like I said myself and the people around me, and give everything I have, then there’s no regrets.

“But I’m speaking as if it’s not with Lewis that I’m fighting or winning titles. I haven’t really thought that far. I’m putting full focus on this season and obviously then we’ll see after.”

shares
comments

Related video

Aston Martin reveals new F1 safety and medical cars

Previous article

Aston Martin reveals new F1 safety and medical cars

Next article

Capito convinced Williams can match McLaren's F1 revival

Capito convinced Williams can match McLaren's F1 revival
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Valtteri Bottas
Teams Mercedes
Author Luke Smith
Why Russell was right to be wrong about Bottas after Imola F1 clash Plus

Why Russell was right to be wrong about Bottas after Imola F1 clash

George Russell and Valtteri Bottas' collision at Imola on Sunday prompted fury in the Formula 1 paddock. But Russell's carefully-worded heartfelt statement later, acknowledging that his initial response was wrong, proved the right move

Formula 1
Apr 22, 2021
How Verstappen and Hamilton’s Imola clash sets the tone for F1’s 2021 title fight Plus

How Verstappen and Hamilton’s Imola clash sets the tone for F1’s 2021 title fight

In Max Verstappen's Formula 1 career to date, he has been cast as the 'pretender', an acknowledged top-line performer without the car to regularly challenge Lewis Hamilton. But that no longer applies in 2021, and the start to the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix was the most telling signal yet of what we can expect from their duel this year

Formula 1
Apr 21, 2021
How “overwhelming” McLaren move has given Ricciardo a new verve Plus

How “overwhelming” McLaren move has given Ricciardo a new verve

Daniel Ricciardo has found a new lease of life at McLaren – a move that’s been years in the making, as he explains to STUART CODLING…

Formula 1
Apr 20, 2021
The German legend who raced and beat Nuvolari Plus

The German legend who raced and beat Nuvolari

Ninety years ago, Rudolf Caracciola became the first non-Italian to win the epic Mille Miglia. We look at how he stacks up to the most famous pre-war ace Tazio Nuvolari, one of the drivers he beat on that day in 1931

Formula 1
Apr 20, 2021
How 2021's midfielders have taken lessons from F1's top teams Plus

How 2021's midfielders have taken lessons from F1's top teams

Formula 1’s latest Imola adventure turned into an expensive trip for many teams due to several crashes throughout the weekend. While balancing the books is an added factor in 2021 with the cost cap, a few midfield teams have cashed in early on development investments

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
Emilia Romagna Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Emilia Romagna Grand Prix Driver Ratings

A frantic wet race at Imola produced plenty of excitement and drama as drivers scrabbled for grip. Amid the hatful of mistakes and incidents that ensued, who kept their noses cleanest?

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
How the Emilia Romagna GP result hinged on three crucial saves Plus

How the Emilia Romagna GP result hinged on three crucial saves

Rain before the start of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix promised to spice up the action, and the race certainly delivered on that. Max Verstappen got the best launch to win from Lewis Hamilton, but both got away with mistakes that could have had serious consequences

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
The back-bedroom world-beater that began a new F1 era Plus

The back-bedroom world-beater that began a new F1 era

The first in a line of world beaters was designed in a back bedroom and then constructed in a shed. STUART CODLING recalls the Tyrrell 001

Formula 1
Apr 18, 2021