Valtteri Bottas Takes On Eminent Alfa Romeo Responsibility on His Shoulders for 2022 F1 Season

Published 01/11/2022, 4:07 AM EST
Formula One F1 – Qatar Grand Prix – Losail International Circuit, Lusail, Qatar – November 21, 2021 Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas during the drivers parade REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed


Valtteri Bottas has an exciting new venture ahead after having spent most of his Formula One career in the shadows of his Mercedes teammate, Lewis Hamilton. The Finn hardly ever earned the opportunity to battle for the championship and most often than not looked like a minnow against the seven-time world champion.

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Prior to the five-year Mercedes stint, Bottas was again only a second driver at Williams, with most of the priorities landing on veteran, Felipe Massa. Hence, Alfa Romeo team principal, Fred Vasseur acknowledged that Bottas, for the first time in his F1 career, will be leading a team from the front.

Subsequently, the Frenchman also admitted that Bottas, unlike his past years, will be carrying a huge responsibility in his upcoming stint with the Swiss-based outfit.

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What did the Alfa Romeo boss say?

Speaking to GP Fans, Vasseur opened up that 2022 is the first time Bottas will find himself in the leading position of a team. “If you have a look, Mercedes, they won the last six or seven championships,” he said. “Sometimes only with the points of Lewis, they would have been a team champion.

Formula One F1 – Mexico Grand Prix – Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, Mexico City, Mexico – November 6, 2021 Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas celebrates pole position with Lewis Hamilton Pool via REUTERS/Francisco Guasco

It means that when you start and you are the Lewis teammate, you are in the shadow. You don’t know what is the expectation. Okay, you have to do the best, but you don’t have a mega responsibility. I think that now Valtteri is at the stage of his career that he is able to afford this.

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Valtteri Bottas will also have to mentor in 2022

Bottas will not only be leading the team in 2022 but also be partnering with a rookie in Guanyu Zhou. Hence, Vasseur pointed out that the Finn would need to push his teammate as hard as possible in a bid to up his performance level.

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Okay, Valtteri, you are not just the driver, you are responsible for the performance of the teammate.’ I mean that you need to bring your teammate with you, you need to push on the engineer, to push on the factory, to go to the wind tunnel, to motivate the guy in the simulator,” he said.

Valtteri Bottas (FIN), Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN during Formula 1 testing at Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Hasan Bratic/DeFodi Images via Getty Images)

If you think that someone is a bit down 10 weeks in a row, to go behind him and say, ‘Guys, wake up, let’s push.’ This position is crucial and Valtteri is ready to do those things.

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Overall, a huge responsibility lies in the hands of Bottas amidst a potentially game-changing season ahead for Alfa Romeo. So, will the 10-time Grand Prix winner play a handy role in reviving the Sauber-led outfit into the upper mid-field pack?

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Rohit Kumar

1638 articles

Rohit Kumar is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. He has been an ardent follower of the racing series since 2007, with his love for the sport coinciding with his love for Kimi Raikkonen. He is also an ardent follower of Sebastian Vettel and Aston Martin Racing.

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