In sweltering conditions, Valtteri Bottas couldn’t stop himself from going on a mini-rant against Mercedes’ black race suits at the Spanish Grand Prix. The Finn, who’s usually pokerfaced and calm, vented his frustrations against the team’s 2020 overalls in hotter conditions.
Ahead of the Belgian Grand Prix, Bottas opened up on his radio outburst and also revealed that the team wasn’t considering any immediate changes to its racing gear.
Scientifically, the color black does absorb more heat, which justifies Bottas’ frustration at the Spanish GP.
“It was just so hot so I said, ‘Guys, you know that these overalls are way too hot.’
“[And] for sure, white would be cooler in terms of temperature”
“And today for example I lost three kilos in the race, which is quite a lot” Bottas was quoted saying, after the Barcelona race.
“And that’s where it can start to affect performance. I know that from all drivers I’m one of the fittest if not the fittest, so I can take it, but it’s never comfortable and there’s always things that we can improve.”
Despite his very valid concerns, Mercedes hasn’t signaled a change in its race attire for the Belgian Grand Prix.
“It was pretty hot in the car,” said Bottas, at the pre-race press conference.
“In theory, as I said after the race, [I don’t know] if it’s the new material or is it the colour?
“I don’t know, but it felt really hot.
“I believe the overalls are the same”
“And I believe that was maybe the hottest race we’ve had this year are going to have this year.
“So it should be OK.”
Thankfully for Bottas, the weather forecast suggests cooler conditions and possible showers on race day for the Belgian Grand Prix.
With the Finn now over 40 points behind Championship leader Lewis Hamilton, Bottas must slam the brakes on Hamilton’s sublime form. If free practice is a sign of things to come, Bottas may be doing just that.
The Finn led Hamilton ahead of Verstappen after the first practice session. F1 returns this Sunday on August 30 for the Belgian Grand Prix.