Wolff: Bottas deserves Mercedes seat, but needs to improve
Mercedes boss Toto Wolff says Valtteri Bottas is aware of the area he needs to improve on before the end of the season, as he outlines some of the reasons the Silver Arrows decided to renew the Finn’s contract.
Ahead of the Belgian Grand Prix this weekend, Mercedes announced that Bottas would be staying with the team for the 2020 F1 season at the expense of Esteban Ocon who had been hoping to take his seat, with the Frenchman subsequently ending up going to Renault.
Wolff insists the decision was carefully thought out, but believes Bottas ultimately deserves to continue to feature for the team.
“Obviously it is not a thing that has been decided in a day. It took several months of looking at data, and the several options,” he told Sky Sports at Spa.
“In the end, it felt the right thing to do. Valtteri has performed well in most of the races - his qualifying record is really good this year.
“He's a stable and great member of the team, always contributing, and he deserves a place in a Mercedes.”
Bottas has two race victories this season to Lewis Hamilton’s eight, with him struggling more on tracks which take more out of the tyres, compared to smoother surfaces.
Wolff says his driver knows that is an area that requires improvement.
“You can see on some tracks when it about tyre deg [degredation] that it is maybe a little bit worse than Lewis” he responded when asked about Bottas’ struggles up against Hamilton.
“But then on the smooth tracks, he is really a force to be reckoned with. He is completely aware of that. He knows he needs to tackle them.
“For me, personally, his rate of improvement is exceptional. This is also one of the reasons he deserves to be in a Mercedes.”
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