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“It was not a very relaxed atmosphere”– Valtteri Bottas on work culture at $1 Billion worth F1 team

Tanish Chachra
|Sat Aug 13 2022

Valtteri Bottas claims that the environment at Mercedes was not at all relaxed, and he was too hard on himself to have his success.

Mercedes hired Valtteri Bottas after Nico Rosberg decided to retire from F1. In the Finnish race driver, Mercedes found a reliable deputy to Lewis Hamilton, which helped them to avoid conflicts between the drivers.

With Bottas, Mercedes won five straight constructors’ championships, while he supported Hamilton to have his own glory. However, this was something Bottas never planned to take on.

The Alfa Romeo driver talking about his Mercedes stint said he wanted instant success with the Silver Arrows. But not succeeding made him not have an easy time himself.

“I wanted to win everything immediately. It was really hard to accept when that didn’t happen in the first couple of years. Also then accepting to be in a support role, that was something I couldn’t quite get my head around,” said Bottas.

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Valtteri Bottas thinks Mercedes environment was tolling

Bottas claims that at Mercedes, everything was about performing. Hence, he hardly enjoyed F1, and now going into Alfa Romeo, with no similar objectives, he is enjoying the sport much more.

“It was not a very relaxed atmosphere, if I’m honest”, he admits. “That’s quite different to what I feel now. Now I enjoy F1 a lot,” he said further.

Nevertheless, Bottas thinks that the time at Mercedes was not so bad too. He tasted so much success, and in the end, it was an enriching experience for him.

Surely, Finn is an incredible driver, but he fell short while competing against Lewis Hamilton, who is undoubtedly one of the greatest ever drivers. Even the drivers like Fernando Alonso, Rosberg and Jenson Button could cope with his competitiveness.

Despite being a deputy at Mercedes, his time with them should be counted as his golden era. Any driver would have killed to take up the role and drive the five most successful cars of the recent era.

Also read: $21 million McLaren seat was offered to multiple drivers including Oscar Piastri at same time

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