“Valtteri Bottas is used to not beating Lewis Hamilton” – Former world champion criticises former Mercedes driver over his efforts in Canada
Former world champion Jacques Villeneuve criticised Alfa Romeo’s Valtteri Bottas for getting out-qualified by his rookie teammate.
Valterri Bottas moved to Alfa Romeo at the beginning of the 2022 season and held the advantage at the start of the season. However, he got outperformed by his rookie teammate, Guanyu Zhou at the recent Azerbaijan and Canadian Grands Prix.
Zhou posted a lap time more than half a second quicker than Bottas in wet conditions to seal a place in Q3 in Canada. Former F1 world champion Jacques Villeneuve has, therefore, urged him to improve.
Villeneuve said, “Zhou has never been on this track and he didn’t get much mileage either. So no, Bottas this year should never, ever get beaten by Zhou. It’s just not on.”
“Not a driver of his experience that has won so many races. This should not happen, mostly on a track that Zhou has not been on.”
Valtteri Bottas is used to getting outperformed
Furthermore, speaking at the F1 Nation podcast, Villeneuve discussed the developing situation of the Alfa Romeo team. He said that Bottas has no excuse for trailing Zhou as the rookie adjusts to F1.
“I don’t know if it’s because he got used to not beating Lewis [Hamilton] and that set him back a little bit. Then he had an easy beginning of the year,” Villeneuve said.
“He was looking good, running at the front, destroying Zhou, and suddenly, Zhou is showing that he is quick.”
Several F1 experts opined that Bottas might be lacking confidence as he did not participate in the FP2 session of the Canadian GP due to technical issues.
Villeneuve said, “We’re not seeing the best Valtteri that we could, or that we should, right now. He should be easily ahead of Zhou.”