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Why Bottas nearly quit F1 after 2018 Russian GP

Why Bottas nearly quit F1 after 2018 Russian GP

F1 News

Why Bottas nearly quit F1 after 2018 Russian GP

Why Bottas nearly quit F1 after 2018 Russian GP
GPFans Staff

Valtteri Bottas has revealed he almost quit Formula 1 in the wake of the team orders furore surrounding the 2018 Russian Grand Prix.

Bottas went into what was the 16th round of the 21-race campaign out of the title fight that had developed at that stage between Mercedes' team-mate Lewis Hamilton and Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel.

After qualifying on pole, Bottas was in contention for the victory at the halfway point of the race, only to infamously be told to cede position to Hamilton to allow him to gain additional points over Vettel.

Hamilton went on to take the chequered flag from Bottas, with Vettel third and falling 50 points adrift of the Briton who went on to claim his fifth F1 title.

Explaining what unfolded that day in the latest series of 'Drive to Survive' on Netflix, Bottas said: "That was tough. It was pretty tough to accept. I was pretty angry.

"Honestly, I was thinking 'Why do I do this?' I was even thinking of quitting, of giving up. After the race, I said I would not do it [let Hamilton through] again."

Bottas went to open up on his feelings about being partnered with Hamilton, and the drive that still exists within him to finally become champion.

"Having Lewis as my team-mate, this multiple world champion, one of the best ever, is pretty tough," added Bottas.

"I should be always happy to be on the podium but if your team-mate wins and you are second, you feel like you have lost.

"I know I have been second in the past but I want to prove I am not just a number two.

"I hate to be second. There are many couch commentators in the sport but I don't let it get to me.

"I know what I am still aiming for and what I am capable of and Lewis knows how hungry I am for the wins and for my first title."

Bottas, though, has questioned whether he has the full support of all within the team at all times.

"In the team, many people - although they won't admit it - maybe unconsciously they have a number one and number two driver," suggested Bottas.

"Sometimes team members have to question themselves - are we giving equal treatment to Lewis and Valtteri?"

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