Bottas: “I’ve missed racing a great deal”

2013 F1 season

Valtteri Bottas, Williams, Hungaroring, 2012New Williams driver Valtteri Bottas says he’s eager to get back to racing after spending a year testing for the team.

His only outings this year have come during 15 free practice sessions during race weekends.

“I?m a naturally very competitive person and I?ve been competing in triathlons throughout 2012 to keep fit and keep my mind sharp,” said Bottas in a Q&A published by the team.

“Obviously I?ve missed racing a great deal so can?t wait to get back onto a starting grid, but I?ve been racing constantly since a very young age so when the lights go out in Australia It will be business as usual.”

His practice outings will be a “big help”, he added. “It means there are only a handful of circuits on the 2013 calendar that I have never driven, in Australia, Monaco, Valencia, Austin and Singapore. There will still be a lot of work to do but it means that I do have some knowledge to work from heading to most races next season.”

Bottas denied his connection to Williams executive director Toto Wolff had a bearing on him taking the seat for 2013: “Toto is part of my management team and has always supported by career, but because of his involvement with Williams he wasn?t part of the negotiations for my contract with the team.

“As with all decisions at Williams, Sir Frank [Williams] and the board of directors get to make the final decision. I?m grateful to Toto for helping introduce me to the Williams F1 Team, but it has been up to me to prove to Frank and the rest of the team that I have the talent and commitment to deliver the results they desire.”

He said he is unsure how competitive he can be in his first year of Formula One: “It?s difficult to set objectives before the season starts, so I?m just trying to make the most of this opportunity to prove the team has been right to promote me to a race seat.

“I want to look back on 2013 and feel that I?ve improved as a driver and helped the team improve its performance on the track.”

“As a team I think we should be aiming to score more points than this year and really get the most out of the car,” he added. “Personally I hope to look back and feel that I have learnt a lot and developed as a driver over the course of the season, having scored a lot of points for the team.”

Team principal Frank Williams said that having Bottas in the teams for three years already is a “big advantage”:

“He spends a lot of time in the factory so has managed to develop good relationships and knows how we like to operate. By that token we also know how he likes to work, which is crucial as developing a car throughout the season requires good two way communication.

“Having a new driver who has spent three seasons testing the car and conducting extensive simulator work means that he is as prepared for his first season as you can get.”

2013 F1 season


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9 comments on Bottas: “I’ve missed racing a great deal”

  1. rabbit (@rabbit) said on 28th November 2012, 11:48

    Congratulations to Valtteri ! Hope he does well.

  2. if williams can up with the goods car wise i can see him being in the title hunt (the next flying finn)

  3. Bullfrog (@bullfrog) said on 28th November 2012, 13:35

    I’d like to add to the menagerie of congratulations.

    Great to see Williams able to take a chance on pure talent and promise again, not just pay-drivers like Nakajima. I’m sure he and the car will be good enough to add to the list of stars the team has brought into F1 recently: Button, Montoya, Rosberg, Hulkenberg and (very) arguably Maldonado.

    He’s pretty quick without a car too – check out his times and average pace for running laps of the tracks at http://www.runthattrack.info/ and it’s impressive stuff.
    (someone needs to run that site though – not working at the moment!)

    • Fernando Cruz said on 30th November 2012, 18:46

      Button was sacked to give way to Montoya, just like Bruno this year to give way to Bottas. However Button was given plenty of time to develop after that, to win his first race only in his 7th year and be Champion in his 10th. Let’s hope Bruno has the same chance to develop, as he clearly has the potential to improve a lot in the coming years.

  4. Calum (@calum) said on 28th November 2012, 14:07

    Well Williams have bigged him up, and he’s got quite a good reputation, it will be exciting to see where he is (in terms of how his career is getting on rather than which team he is at).

  5. Maksutov (@maksutov) said on 28th November 2012, 21:53

    “I’m a naturally very competitive person …so when the lights go out in Australia It will be business as usual.”

    I hope that doesn’t turn into “Grosjean saga” type business. But I look forward to see how he performes. Although, I feel it will be tough for him against Maldonado.

  6. Sergio Perez (@sergio-perez) said on 29th November 2012, 3:02

    This guy is the real deal. Its going to be interesting since he can outpace Maldonado. Now add to the F1 grid Antonio Da Costa and Edoardo Mortara, and keep Kamui Kobayashi, and it would be the strongest F1 field of the last decade.

  7. Force Maikel (@force-maikel) said on 29th November 2012, 16:21

    I don’t get the feeling he’s all that great but I have been proved wrong before. Good luck to him in 2013.

  8. AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 29th November 2012, 19:12

    This does seem like a more natural progression for Williams, rather than just chucking someone in the car with the biggest cheque. I hope it’s a sign of stability for them and they can deliver a good car next year.

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