Valtteri Bottas admits that his Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton missing out on the World Title in 2021, cost him some bonus money.
The 2021 Abu Dhabi GP will live long in the memory of F1 fans all over the world. Whether the memories they hold on to are good or bad, depends on what they wanted the outcome to be.
Hamilton looked set to win his eight World Title that evening before a late safety car changed it all. Race Director Michael Masi’s controversial decision making allowed Max Verstappen to pass the Brit on the final lap.
As a result, the Red Bull driver leapfrogged his Mercedes counterpart to take home the race win and Championship.
Verstappen passes Hamilton on the final lap!
— Formula 1 (@F1) December 12, 2021
Mercedes did end up winning their eighth consecutive Constructors’ Title that evening. However, as team principal Toto Wolff admitted, the entire outfit was shocked and hurt at how their star driver missed out on glory.
Hamilton’s ex-teammate Valtteri Bottas, took part in final race for Mercedes at the 2021 season finale. He himself seemed very startled at how the race ended, but didn’t publicly take sides on the matter.
Almost two months have passed since that infamous race-week in Yas Island. In a recent interview, Bottas revealed how the events of Abu Dhabi further affected the team.
Certain performance based bonusses were lost after Hamilton’s loss in Abu Dhabi, says Valtteri Bottas
Bottas spoke about how the team members are drivers are given a bonus if certain conditions are met. As expected, Hamilton winning the Title was probably going to lead to some extra cash for all team members, including Bottas.
When asked if the seven-time Champion’s loss took those away from the team, Bottas replied with, “You are right. It was quite a final lap. Certain bonuses are tied to certain achievements.”
Bottas jumping in the pool without a care in the world while Mercedes mobilize all the lawyers in Abu Dhabi 😅 pic.twitter.com/wD9DOi5vVr
— ESPN F1 (@ESPNF1) December 12, 2021
“Luckily, I hadn’t gotten anything in advance. Sometimes you win, sometimes you don’t. I don’t really measure it like that but at some point, a moment came when there was no need to look at the bank balance anymore,” he continued.
“Money is of course a big thing in Formula 1. But I remember where I come from and I have done quite well because of that.”
Bottas decided to join Alfa Romeo ahead of the 2022 season. He spent five seasons with the Brackley based outfit where he won 10 races. The 32-year also played a crucial role in guiding his time to five Constructors’ titles during his time with the Silver Arrows.