Valtteri Bottas at Mercedes

Valtteri Bottas at Mercedes

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Discussion

Joey Deacon

4,019 posts

144 months

Monday 7th June
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wiliferus said:
I’ll probably get shot down for this. But to me, VB is to LH what Berger was to Senna.

A reliable, fairly solid if not unremarkable F1 driver. Seemingly happy to play second fiddle to the No1 driver.
VB is unlikely to ever be F1 World Champion.
He just seems to lack the animal instinct and sparkle of a potential champion. As said above, he never seems to make progress. He lacks the fight and ability to push on during a race.

I’d find it unbelievable if Merc aren’t considering their options for 2022.
100% agree, and as I said earlier in this thread (and was shot down) this was all well and good all the time Mercedes had the best car and Lewis was easily winning the title.

Now we have a situation where Red Bull are the equal of Mercedes and both Max and Sergio are all over Lewis. As we saw yesterday, one bad pitstop and Lewis is down to third with Sergio being impossible to pass and Max heading off into the distance. Mercedes need their other driver at the front to stop Red Bull doing this, it's no good him driving around in tenth place.

In a head to head between Valtteri and Max or Sergio who would you put your money on?

I would like to think that George has been told the drive is his next year and part of the issue at the moment is Valtteri knows he and F1 are pretty much done.




wiliferus

3,790 posts

166 months

Monday 7th June
quotequote all
Muzzer79 said:
wiliferus said:
Muzzer79 said:
Gerhard Berger drove for McLaren in 1990 & 1991 and managed 1 win across both seasons. Senna won the title both years.
I’ll probably get shot down for this. But to me, VB is to LH what Berger was to Senna.

A reliable, fairly solid if not unremarkable F1 driver. Seemingly happy to play second fiddle to the No1 driver.
VB is unlikely to ever be F1 World Champion.
He just seems to lack the animal instinct and sparkle of a potential champion. As said above, he never seems to make progress. He lacks the fight and ability to push on during a race.

I’d find it unbelievable if Merc aren’t considering their options for 2022.
That's exactly what he is.

He is Berger, Barrichello, Irvine, Webber. A solid backup

But that's exactly what Mercedes want.They know that their next champion is either Hamilton or Hamilton's replacement.

The decision comes from whether Hamilton's replacement drives alongside Hamilton from next year for a while or whether Hamilton will be around for a few years yet so they keep the status quo.

If they choose to keep status quo, it will not be a bad decision having a multi-race winner and regular podium sitter alongside the most successful driver of all time.
It’s what they wanted when Hamilton was bringing home the bacon and Red Bull were miles off.
If RB take the Constructors this year, it’ll be at least in part because Perez is out performing Bottas.

Hamilton didn’t stump up the goods this weekend. A decent 2nd driver is meant to salvage some points for the team, not potter over the line in 12th.

g4ry13

11,698 posts

223 months

Monday 7th June
quotequote all
A solid backup is someone who nabs the wins when your #1 cocks up / retires, takes points away from the #1's competitors and consistently bags the team points to win the constructors.

So far this season Bottas has achieved 3 x P3, 2 x retirement and 12th place.

2020: 2x win, 6 x P2, 3 x P3, 1 x P5, 2 x P8, 1 x P11, 1 x P14, 1 x retirement.

n3il123

2,245 posts

181 months

Monday 7th June
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Apparently the logical reason for Bottas having a rubbish weekend is that his chassis is knackered Link

Smollet

6,573 posts

158 months

Monday 7th June
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thegreenhell said:
ajprice said:
The other Mercedes powered racing team with a Wolff in charge...

The series where failed F1 drivers go to end their professional careers.
So true.

Muzzer79

5,068 posts

155 months

Monday 7th June
quotequote all
g4ry13 said:
A solid backup is someone who nabs the wins when your #1 cocks up / retires, takes points away from the #1's competitors and consistently bags the team points to win the constructors.

So far this season Bottas has achieved 3 x P3, 2 x retirement and 12th place.

2020: 2x win, 6 x P2, 3 x P3, 1 x P5, 2 x P8, 1 x P11, 1 x P14, 1 x retirement.
Exactly - Bottas looks pretty solid to me.

g4ry13

11,698 posts

223 months

Monday 7th June
quotequote all
Muzzer79 said:
g4ry13 said:
A solid backup is someone who nabs the wins when your #1 cocks up / retires, takes points away from the #1's competitors and consistently bags the team points to win the constructors.

So far this season Bottas has achieved 3 x P3, 2 x retirement and 12th place.

2020: 2x win, 6 x P2, 3 x P3, 1 x P5, 2 x P8, 1 x P11, 1 x P14, 1 x retirement.
Exactly - Bottas looks pretty solid to me.
A lousy supporting driver in my opinion. But you're entitled to yours too smile

TwentyFive

322 posts

34 months

Monday 7th June
quotequote all
Muzzer79 said:


The decision comes from whether Hamilton's replacement drives alongside Hamilton from next year for a while or whether Hamilton will be around for a few years yet so they keep the status quo.
I agree with your point from a harmony perspective but there is another dimension at play that means it isn't as simple as that.

Mercedes rivals have their ducks in a row contracts wise, and have their next generation talents locked down to multi-year deals (Leclerc, Norris etc). Verstappen could possibly be interested in a big money Mercedes move but that isn't happening whilst Lewis is there anyway so I see him as a long term Red Bull leader too. They all have their young charger to lead them for the next 5 or so years at least.

They need to get Russell in the car for 2022 or they might lose him. He is next in line for that seat and is the young gun they clearly already trust (see 2020 race appearance as an example) to take it to the other young chargers i've listed above in the future.

If they don't take George for '22 then they leave themselves open to a significant driver disadvantage down the line once Lewis decides to knock it on the head. Get him in, get him the front running experience, cover off the ever emerging Perez threat to the WCC and allow him to ply his trade wheel to wheel with his future title rivals. He isn't learning anything of relevance by having a 4th year back in a Williams.

As for Bottas, I think he has already been told, or at least senses that he is out at the end of the year. He is constantly negative, held Lewis up for no good reason in Spain and just seems a different bloke to the one we saw at the very start of the season. No team player aspect to him anymore... and that only changes for one reason.

wiliferus

3,790 posts

166 months

Monday 7th June
quotequote all
TwentyFive said:
I agree with your point from a harmony perspective but there is another dimension at play that means it isn't as simple as that.

Mercedes rivals have their ducks in a row contracts wise, and have their next generation talents locked down to multi-year deals (Leclerc, Norris etc). Verstappen could possibly be interested in a big money Mercedes move but that isn't happening whilst Lewis is there anyway so I see him as a long term Red Bull leader too. They all have their young charger to lead them for the next 5 or so years at least.

They need to get Russell in the car for 2022 or they might lose him. He is next in line for that seat and is the young gun they clearly already trust (see 2020 race appearance as an example) to take it to the other young chargers i've listed above in the future.

If they don't take George for '22 then they leave themselves open to a significant driver disadvantage down the line once Lewis decides to knock it on the head. Get him in, get him the front running experience, cover off the ever emerging Perez threat to the WCC and allow him to ply his trade wheel to wheel with his future title rivals. He isn't learning anything of relevance by having a 4th year back in a Williams.

As for Bottas, I think he has already been told, or at least senses that he is out at the end of the year. He is constantly negative, held Lewis up for no good reason in Spain and just seems a different bloke to the one we saw at the very start of the season. No team player aspect to him anymore... and that only changes for one reason.
Agreed. The sooner they get GR in the car the better.
If LH does have a plan to go, whenever that maybe, it’s better to have GR fully bedded in to take over the #1 spot. It’s like a relay race, if GR is going to take the baton, he needs to be running before he takes it. A year or two alongside LH learning from the master of Mercedes won’t do GR any harm at all. Then when LH goes, GR picks up where he left off. Plus having GR in a Mercedes will keep LH honest…

Sandpit Steve

3,541 posts

42 months

Monday 7th June
quotequote all
Smollet said:
thegreenhell said:
ajprice said:
The other Mercedes powered racing team with a Wolff in charge...

The series where failed F1 drivers go to end their professional careers.
So true.
It’s the only other series with enough of a budget to pay six-figure salaries to drivers. Pays more than anything else outside F1, only a well-sponsored Indycar drive comes close. Give it a few years, and we’ll hear from retired FE drivers about how much they all hated it but it paid well!

honda_exige

2,994 posts

174 months

Monday 7th June
quotequote all
Sandpit Steve said:
It’s the only other series with enough of a budget to pay six-figure salaries to drivers. Pays more than anything else outside F1, only a well-sponsored Indycar drive comes close. Give it a few years, and we’ll hear from retired FE drivers about how much they all hated it but it paid well!
Well WRC pays 6 figures and VB has done a few rallies already I believe? I reckon he'll faff about with that for a bit.

Also the new LeMans rules and multiple manufacturers taking part probably means there's large salaries on offer especially for someone comparatively high profile like a recent ex-F1 driver.

HustleRussell

19,769 posts

128 months

Monday 7th June
quotequote all
honda_exige said:
Well WRC pays 6 figures and VB has done a few rallies already I believe? I reckon he'll faff about with that for a bit.
Let me guess, he participates in WRC with limited success for a couple of years before returning to F1 with Alpine where he will achieve a few podiums, before a stint as Ferrari #2 and finally he will spend his dotage at Sauber. Bwoah.

M5-911

738 posts

13 months

Monday 7th June
quotequote all
Once Bottas is back on European tracks, everything should be better hopefully. Only thing is that the Redbull is just a bit to rapid for Hamilton as well. It was fascinating to watch Hamilton trying to keep up with the Redbull this weekend.

Muzzer79

5,068 posts

155 months

Monday 7th June
quotequote all
TwentyFive said:
Muzzer79 said:


The decision comes from whether Hamilton's replacement drives alongside Hamilton from next year for a while or whether Hamilton will be around for a few years yet so they keep the status quo.
I agree with your point from a harmony perspective but there is another dimension at play that means it isn't as simple as that.

Mercedes rivals have their ducks in a row contracts wise, and have their next generation talents locked down to multi-year deals (Leclerc, Norris etc). Verstappen could possibly be interested in a big money Mercedes move but that isn't happening whilst Lewis is there anyway so I see him as a long term Red Bull leader too. They all have their young charger to lead them for the next 5 or so years at least.

They need to get Russell in the car for 2022 or they might lose him. He is next in line for that seat and is the young gun they clearly already trust (see 2020 race appearance as an example) to take it to the other young chargers i've listed above in the future.

If they don't take George for '22 then they leave themselves open to a significant driver disadvantage down the line once Lewis decides to knock it on the head. Get him in, get him the front running experience, cover off the ever emerging Perez threat to the WCC and allow him to ply his trade wheel to wheel with his future title rivals. He isn't learning anything of relevance by having a 4th year back in a Williams.

As for Bottas, I think he has already been told, or at least senses that he is out at the end of the year. He is constantly negative, held Lewis up for no good reason in Spain and just seems a different bloke to the one we saw at the very start of the season. No team player aspect to him anymore... and that only changes for one reason.
I actually agree that Mercedes should get George into the car for 2022.

They need to cover off a Hamilton departure so the next team leader needs to come in - if that's George, great.

My point throughout this thread though is that Bottas should be moved on in order to allow a new team leader to settle alongside Lewis for a year or two, not because Bottas isn't doing a good enough job - because he is smile


TheDeuce

10,115 posts

34 months

Monday 7th June
quotequote all
Muzzer79 said:
I actually agree that Mercedes should get George into the car for 2022.

They need to cover off a Hamilton departure so the next team leader needs to come in - if that's George, great.

My point throughout this thread though is that Bottas should be moved on in order to allow a new team leader to settle alongside Lewis for a year or two, not because Bottas isn't doing a good enough job - because he is smile
I've always supported Bottas too - he's as good as I think can be expected from any driver that's also so compliant, and he's so quick in quali (usually..) that he typically gets the job done then. This season is slightly different with RB close enough to challenge him during the race, but he's still a good choice imo and I suspect will actually prove as much by the end of the season.

But I too agree with GR for 2022, regardless of which current driver leaves/is booted to make way. It has made sense whilst Merc winning was all but a formality to keep the driver pairing that works - regardless if a different pairing 'could' be better, it also could be worse and that's a situation Merc haven't needed to explore. Until now... where RB is more of a threat, and also Merc can only go so long without succession planning for Lewis's exit.

I reckon Merc were right to keep Lewis and Bottas together up until now and to give Lewis a great shot at title #8. For 22' and beyond, if Lewis is to remain, Bottas should go to make way for George. Or if Lewis does decide to leave (unlikely imo) then Bottas should remain and George should replace Lewis.


TwentyFive

322 posts

34 months

Monday 7th June
quotequote all
M5-911 said:
Once Bottas is back on European tracks, everything should be better hopefully. Only thing is that the Redbull is just a bit to rapid for Hamilton as well. It was fascinating to watch Hamilton trying to keep up with the Redbull this weekend.
From a Hamilton perspective I think that is likely track dependant. I think he is favourite to win in France.

The Bottas problem isn't so much about him being fine once back on European tracks, its the damage his performances have already done to Mercedes WCC chances that's the concern.

On average, Max is going to be in the top 2 on pace every weekend and now Perez has clearly now got a handle on the Red Bull too. He will only get faster as the season progresses and Mercedes find themselves nearly 30 points behind Red Bull already. Hamilton can no longer single handily fight that fight.

If Bottas doesn't turn it around and fast, then Red Bull will take the WCC even if Lewis manages to beat Max to the drivers title. The bad news for Mercedes is that Lewis could win every race for the rest of the year, but if Bottas is not in the top 4 every weekend (as he should be) then the WCC is likely being lost.

It is very reminiscent of McLaren in 2008. Lewis getting it done at the front, and (coincidentally) his Finnish teammate Kovalainen not pulling his weight in the other car. That season ended with Lewis winning the drivers but McLaren not getting the WCC. De ja vu anyone?

kiseca

9,287 posts

187 months

Monday 7th June
quotequote all
TwentyFive said:
M5-911 said:
Once Bottas is back on European tracks, everything should be better hopefully. Only thing is that the Redbull is just a bit to rapid for Hamilton as well. It was fascinating to watch Hamilton trying to keep up with the Redbull this weekend.
From a Hamilton perspective I think that is likely track dependant. I think he is favourite to win in France.

The Bottas problem isn't so much about him being fine once back on European tracks, its the damage his performances have already done to Mercedes WCC chances that's the concern.

On average, Max is going to be in the top 2 on pace every weekend and now Perez has clearly now got a handle on the Red Bull too. He will only get faster as the season progresses and Mercedes find themselves nearly 30 points behind Red Bull already. Hamilton can no longer single handily fight that fight.

If Bottas doesn't turn it around and fast, then Red Bull will take the WCC even if Lewis manages to beat Max to the drivers title. The bad news for Mercedes is that Lewis could win every race for the rest of the year, but if Bottas is not in the top 4 every weekend (as he should be) then the WCC is likely being lost.

It is very reminiscent of McLaren in 2008. Lewis getting it done at the front, and (coincidentally) his Finnish teammate Kovalainen not pulling his weight in the other car. That season ended with Lewis winning the drivers but McLaren not getting the WCC. De ja vu anyone?
Only one race ago Bottas was in contention for pole and then running around in a comfortable second place not far behind Verstappen, while Lewis struggled to qualify in the top 10 and then stayed where he was through the race. Had Verstappen had a puncture at Monaco, and the wheel not getting stuck on the car, it would have been Bottas benefitting while Perez wasn't on the podium.

He's had a couple of difficult races where he's shown it's difficult to get the car switched on. Lewis has, while faring better than Bottas as would be expected of a 7 times world champion vs a 0 times world champion, also shown that the car can be difficult to switch on.

Bottas has his weaknesses and has never quite looked like a world champion, but then neither has Perez, and neither has Sainz for that matter. He's par for the course for the second best driver in a top team right now, dealing with a difficult car. IMO.

He may well be losing it, but the season is still too early to rule out anything but bad luck so far. The car is off form. It's too early yet to say whether Bottas is.

honda_exige

2,994 posts

174 months

Monday 7th June
quotequote all
kiseca said:
Only one race ago Bottas was in contention for pole and then running around in a comfortable second place not far behind Verstappen, while Lewis struggled to qualify in the top 10 and then stayed where he was through the race. Had Verstappen had a puncture at Monaco, and the wheel not getting stuck on the car, it would have been Bottas benefitting while Perez wasn't on the podium.

He's had a couple of difficult races where he's shown it's difficult to get the car switched on. Lewis has, while faring better than Bottas as would be expected of a 7 times world champion vs a 0 times world champion, also shown that the car can be difficult to switch on.

Bottas has his weaknesses and has never quite looked like a world champion, but then neither has Perez, and neither has Sainz for that matter. He's par for the course for the second best driver in a top team right now, dealing with a difficult car. IMO.

He may well be losing it, but the season is still too early to rule out anything but bad luck so far. The car is off form. It's too early yet to say whether Bottas is.
Difference is Perez has shown multiple times that he can come through the field and also as we saw yesterday is adept at defending a position, Bottas is good at neither imo.

TwentyFive

322 posts

34 months

Monday 7th June
quotequote all
kiseca said:
Had Verstappen had a puncture at Monaco, and the wheel not getting stuck on the car, it would have been Bottas benefitting while Perez wasn't on the podium.
Points are scored based on what happens, not on what may have happened if this, that and the other....

He was unlucky with the wheel nut at Monaco, but you can't ignore the fact he has just half the points of Hamilton after just 6 races and that includes a Lewis non score too. Not good enough for a guy now in his 5th year in the team in my view. At least Perez had the valid excuse of finding his feet in a new environment to begin with.


kiseca said:
The car is off form. It's too early yet to say whether Bottas is.
Is it? The Mercedes car has won as many races as Red Bull this season. It's on form, but just not as dominant as before.

Bottas is 6th in the world championship and four of the five drivers ahead of him in the standings have already non scored at some stage. I am looking at the driver as the issue here. It could of course be a chassis issue or something like that, but that seems unlikely given he showed Lewis a clean pair of heels all weekend at Monaco until the wheel nut rounded.

France will be a good gauge of where he stacks up as Mercedes should, on paper be right up front. In a clean race Bottas needs to be top 3 or the media pressure will just keep building.

kiseca

9,287 posts

187 months

Monday 7th June
quotequote all
honda_exige said:
kiseca said:
Only one race ago Bottas was in contention for pole and then running around in a comfortable second place not far behind Verstappen, while Lewis struggled to qualify in the top 10 and then stayed where he was through the race. Had Verstappen had a puncture at Monaco, and the wheel not getting stuck on the car, it would have been Bottas benefitting while Perez wasn't on the podium.

He's had a couple of difficult races where he's shown it's difficult to get the car switched on. Lewis has, while faring better than Bottas as would be expected of a 7 times world champion vs a 0 times world champion, also shown that the car can be difficult to switch on.

Bottas has his weaknesses and has never quite looked like a world champion, but then neither has Perez, and neither has Sainz for that matter. He's par for the course for the second best driver in a top team right now, dealing with a difficult car. IMO.

He may well be losing it, but the season is still too early to rule out anything but bad luck so far. The car is off form. It's too early yet to say whether Bottas is.
Difference is Perez has shown multiple times that he can come through the field and also as we saw yesterday is adept at defending a position, Bottas is good at neither imo.
Two weeks ago on PH Perez was out of favour too, with popular opinion being he wasn't doing enough to keep his seat next year. Opinion has swung completely for both drivers over the course of a single race. Now all of a sudden he's a target Bottas can't reach. If in the next race Bottas is right on Lewis's tail and Perez drops it again, the opinion pendulum will swing again.

Perez can come through a field but that's only a skill needed when something other than an underperforming car puts you at the back.

Bottas is a great qualifier, arguably more successful at qualifying than Perez, which means he shouldn't often need to push a fast car through the field.