Valtteri Bottas has not won a grand prix this season, nevertheless, he believes he has done enough in the first ten races of the season to convince Mercedes that he is the right guy for the job beyond 2018.
In the garage next to the quiet Finn, his teammate Lewis Hamilton has won twice and has scored 59 more points. However, it would be fair to say that the driver in the #77 has a fair share of bad luck which cost him a victory or two this season.
Bottas is convinced he is doing enough, “For sure it puts me in a decent place this year, and even though I’ve not scored the points I would have wanted I have always performed at the level the team requires me to do.”
“I’m more or less on the level I want personally. For sure that’s a good thing even though only the team sees in great detail how I perform every week.”
“Having a few wins never does anything bad for you for the future but at least the team knows exactly how I’m performing and the direction I’m going with my improvement,” said Bottas who has yet to seriously challenge Hamilton within the Silver Arrows ranks.
Niki Lauda points to a two or three-tenths deficit that separates the two, the world champion able to squeeze a little more than the Finn is able to do at this stage.
Bottas acknowledges that last year the gap was bigger, suggesting an improvement, “I’ve felt I have been able to improve my weaknesses and strengths. Overall performance has just been closer, there have been less big gaps between me and Lewis.”
“No matter if the car’s been good to drive or very difficult to drive. I feel I’ve been able to extract what there is and it’s been quite close,” added Bottas who can take comfort that his benchmark – Hamilton – is one of the best drivers of this generations and has four F1 world titles to show for it.