Valtteri Bottas has renewed his contract with Mercedes-AMG F1 team for 2021. The 30-year old Finn has been racing for the German racing outfit since 2017 – next year will mark his fifth year at Mercedes.
It’s official! Valtteri Bottas will remain with Mercedes-AMG F1 in 2021. With the contract renewal, Bottas’ tenure at Mercedes will be extended to five years, since he joined the team in 2017 when he replaced Nico Rosberg.
Given his current form and position in the team, it was widely expected that Mercedes will re-sign Bottas for 2021. However, with Sebastian Vettel leaving Ferrari next year, and other big shake-ups in the driver line up, there were speculations doing the rounds concerning Mercedes and Bottas parting ways.
Vettel moving to Mercedes was always a highly unlikely possibility, but Williams’ George Russell was strongly linked to Mercedes as Bottas’ replacement from next year. However, with Russell staying put at Williams in 2021, even those rumours have been laid to rest. Although Mercedes hasn’t confirmed its second driver as yet, it’s a given that the reigning world champion Lewis Hamilton will continue to partner Bottas next year.
Although Bottas’ performance has been impressive with Mercedes, he hasn’t really been able to challenge teammate Hamilton for the title so far. Having said that, the 30-year old Finn has racked up 8 wins, 12 pole positions, and a total of 48 podium finishes in his F1 career so far. In his first season with Mercedes, Bottas finished third overall, while in 2019, he was second in the driver’s championship behind his teammate.
In the current 2020 season, Bottas is again chasing Hamilton in the driver’s championship. However, in the last race at Silverstone (UK), Bottas dropped from second place to finish outside of points, owing to a last-minute puncture in the race. Hamilton’s car, too, suffered a puncture in the very last lap of the race, but he managed to drag it home on three wheels to win the race. Owing to Bottas' misfortune at Silverstone, Hamilton, at 88 points, is currently leading the championship from Bottas (58) by 30 points after four races.