After tripping out of the lead while apparently in control of the 2020 Eifel Grand Prix, Valtteri Bottas is still adamant that on a good day he is better than his Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton.
This comes in the wake of another weekend in which the Finn promised much but underdelivered; starting from pole position at Nurburgring on Sunday he led impressively early on but then messed it up when he overshot his braking point on lap 12 of the race.
The stalking #44 car slipped by while #77 recovered only to be sidelined a little later with a technical issue; at the end of the day it was 25 points to Lewis, zero to Valtteri. Game, set and match!
After the disappointment in Germany, Sky F1 asked Valtteri if he felt he was better than his illustrious Lewis, he replied, “Of course I have to believe that. I believe that when I’m at my best I know I can be better than him.
“But obviously, there are days that he’s better, no doubt, and overall in the last few years being his team-mate, overall he has been better.”
Unfortunately, stats show that Valtteri has not been “at his best” often enough to trouble, let alone challenge and beat Lewis on a regular basis. It has not happened in the four seasons the he 31-yer-old has been with the world champion team.
One could argue he is the ideal wingman for Lewis’ record-breaking quest; arguably the most effective pairing in F1 history in the traditional number be and number two driver scenario (designated or not) that has served teams so well throughout time.
Valtteri admitted, “I don’t do politics, I just love driving, I love racing. I like fair but hard racing and that’s what I do, that’s how I’ve always raced and that’s how I’ll go on.
“I’ve been pretty pleased with my performance, especially compared to previous years. Especially my race pace has been really good so I think the performance has been there. It’s been about small details, get them right and get things to go my way as well.
“Overall performance has been pretty positive,” ventured Bottas who has won twice this year, in Austria and Russia, and lies second in the championship, albeit 69 points adrift of teammate Lewis, with six rounds remaining.