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Bottas relieved after Abu Dhabi practice scare

Bottas relieved after Abu Dhabi practice scare

F1 News

Bottas relieved after Abu Dhabi practice scare

Bottas relieved after Abu Dhabi practice scare

Valtteri Bottas has brushed off his Abu Dhabi Grand Prix practice contact with the wall at turn 14 as "a nice drift".

The Finn was pushing hard during the second session where times are more representative due to the twilight conditions when the rear end of his Mercedes stepped out through the newly-reprofiled hotel section of the circuit.

The right-rear corner of his car made what appeared to be heavy contact with the barriers yet Bottas' W12 escaped damage and the Finn went on to finish third in the session, behind Esteban Ocon and team-mate Lewis Hamilton, who was fastest.

"That section is a bit faster now and the track, offline, is still dirty and dusty," explained Bottas.

"So I think I went a bit too wide on the kerbs before that corner and I paid for it in the next one. Luckily, no damage. A nice drift."

Offering his thoughts on the renovated circuit, Bottas said: "It was nice to get a feel of the modified layout and it definitely feels a bit nicer than before, the track has a bit more flow.

"I would say some increased overtaking opportunities. Also set-up wise it is tricky because of the long corners and some of the camber. I enjoyed it."

Red Bull and Max Verstappen topped the first Friday session yet were unable to match the Silver Arrows during qualifying simulations in FP2.

"We changed the car quite a bit from practice one to two and it did feel like a step forward," added Bottas.

"Although it is comfortable overall with the car, still, none of the laps were amazing so there should be more to come."

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