The lingering weaknesses Bottas must eliminate now
Valtteri Bottas's fight to remain at Mercedes starts again for 2021 after completing a deal to remain with the team next year. With Ferrari and Red Bull looming as a threat, he must remove his lingering weaknesses
Valtteri Bottas has got what he wanted; a fourth season alongside Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes. It's a vote of confidence in him, albeit not as emphatic as a new multi-year deal would have been. So what does he need to do next season to ensure it is not just a case of one more season?
The man himself remains focused on becoming Formula 1 world champion, as you'd expect for someone who only turned 30 on Wednesday. He reiterated his determination to do that on Thursday, but Mercedes doesn't need Bottas to become world champion. His role is far more nuanced than that, and consequently almost as difficult to perform.
OPINION: Max Verstappen has made the 2021 Formula 1 championship. He’s taken the fight to the all-conquering Mercedes squad and its dominant champion, produced driving displays few can match. But he’s been on a controversial course too, and finally crossed a particular line in Jeddah
The inaugural Saudi Arabian Grand Prix was a race packed full of incident as Formula 1 2021's title contenders repeatedly clashed on track. Lewis Hamilton won out over Max Verstappen to level the scores heading into next weekend's Abu Dhabi finale, as Jeddah turned F1 into a drama series
Dropped by Red Bull last season, Alexander Albon has fought back into a Formula 1 seat with Williams. ALEX KALINAUCKAS explains what Albon has done to earn the place soon to be vacated by the highly rated George Russell
Mercedes led the way in practice for Formula 1’s first race in Jeddah, where Red Bull was off the pace on both single-lap and long runs. But, if Max Verstappen can reverse the results on Saturday, factors familiar in motorsport’s main electric single-seater category could be decisive in another close battle with Lewis Hamilton
Earning praise from rivals has been a welcome sign that Lando Norris is becoming established among Formula 1's elite. But the McLaren driver is confident that his team's upward curve can put him in the mix to contend for titles in the future, when he's hoping the compliments will be replaced by being deemed an equal adversary
After a disastrous 2020 in which it slumped to sixth in the F1 constructors' standings, Ferrari has rebounded strongly and is on course to finish third - despite regulations that forced it to carryover much of its forgettable SF1000 machine. Yet while it can be pleased with its improvement, there are still steps it must make if 2022 is to yield a return to winning ways
OPINION: The pressure is firmly on Red Bull and Mercedes as Formula 1 2021 embarks on its final double-header. How the respective teams deal with that will be a crucial factor in deciding the outcome of the drivers' and constructors' championships, as Autosport's technical consultant and ex-McLaren F1 engineer explains
Your Abu Dhabi GP travel guide with Thomas Cook Sport
F1 teams agree to reduced pre-season and in-season testing for 2020