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Bottas starting from zero in 2019

  • Published on 06 Mar 2019 15:38
  • comments 3
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Valtteri Bottas says he intends to start the 2019 Formula 1 season from zero as he looks to recover from a disappointing 2018 campaign.

Bottas failed to win a race last year, despite coming close on a number of occasions. The Finn ended the season fifth in the drivers' championship, while teammate Lewis Hamilton claimed his fifth world title.

The former Williams driver enters his third year with Mercedes in 2019, and will have a brand new race engineer in Riccardo Musconi as Tony Ross has left to work on Mercedes Formula E programme.

"There’s always a little bit of work to start a new driver-engineer relationship and I’ve actually also have a new performance engineer too, so it feels like a bit of a fresh start for the season,” Bottas said. 

“We’ve only got to know each other better right at the end of last year, but I think it has been pretty good. Sometimes changes can be good, we started from a clean, fresh page. 

“All the meetings we’ve had in December and January, about my performance, what can we do better during the race weekends, my weaknesses, my strengths, it has been quite nice to work with two new people and even in testing it has been enjoyable. 

“Obviously we’re still getting to know each other better and when it will come to setting the car up with limited time during the race weekends, we’ll see how we can do that. But, so far so good.” 

Bottas added that he has learned a lot from 2018, and aims to be more consistent to bring home stronger results.

“For me obviously we start from zero,” Bottas said. "I had a pretty decent start performance-wise to last year and even though looking back there was many things I could have done better. 

“So try to do every single detail better myself and try to be the best version of myself and I have been able to be ahead of Lewis so I know I can do it. 

“It is about consistency, about the right approach to each weekend, and that I make sure for sure I’ve learned all the lessons from last year. In the end it’s not rocket science, it is hard work, about commitment and wanting to get to the goal one way or another.” 

Replies (3)

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  • Good for you Valterri, I hope you show everyone what you can do. This year promises to be a bit different to last, the pecking order seems to suggest Ferrari a little ahead at the start - but he cannot worry about that - he has only one objective and that is to perform to Hamilton's level. Good luck on that score.

    • + 1
    • Mar 6 2019 - 22:55
  • I hope Bottas comes out swinging and gives us a fun battle to watch at the front, because Ferrari have already, even before the season started, made Leclerc a soft #2. I'm sure he can work his way out of that hole if Sebastian drivers as poorly as last year. But I doubt it.

    • + 1
    • Mar 7 2019 - 07:12
    • I dunno, as I've said before I'm not all that certain Leclerc is a no 2... Yet... But we'll see. I find Leclerc more likely to challenge than Bottas.

      • + 0
      • Mar 7 2019 - 13:01
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