Valtteri Bottas makes ‘weird’ Lewis Hamilton comment as Mercedes’ stuttering form pondered

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VALTTERI BOTTAS has spoken out about Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes’ poor begin to the season.

Lewis Hamilton refuses to let 2021 season ‘outline’ his profession

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Alfa Romeo star Valtteri Bottas admitted that it’s ‘bizarre’ to see Lewis Hamilton struggling for Mercedes. The Finn was successfully ushered out of the Silver Arrows exit door on the finish of final season when younger celebrity George Russell obtained the call-up from Williams, ending a five-season stint as Hamilton’s sidekick. 

Regardless of a raft of pre-season points, Bahrain’s season opener was form to Hamilton as he claimed an unlikely podium after each Pink Bull vehicles retired. The Brit was afforded no such luck in Saturday’s Saudi Arabian qualifying, nevertheless, as he failed to achieve Q2 for the primary time since 2017. 

With a transparent tempo deficit between Mercedes and their two title rivals, Ferrari and Pink Bull, they supposedly tried an experimental set-up on Hamilton’s automobile which brutally backfired. Having wound up in sixteenth, staff boss Toto Wolff claimed it’s time to ‘get up’. 

Russell fared significantly better and can begin sixth on the grid however he was removed from pleased together with his day’s work. Having tinkered with their vehicles for one more week, the qualifying nightmare means that Mercedes have misplaced floor on the front-runners. 

Valtteri Bottas makes 'weird' Lewis Hamilton comment as Mercedes' stuttering form pondered

Valtteri Bottas admits that it’s ‘bizarre’ to see Lewis Hamilton struggling this season (Picture: GETTY)

Silver Arrows struggles have been highlighted additional by the relative success of Bottas together with his new staff, Alfa Romeo. The Finn was anticipated to tumble down the pack when his Mercedes seat went to Russell, however he out-qualified his substitute in Bahrain final day trip and he out-qualified Hamilton in Jeddah. 

When quizzed on his unlikely success and Mercedes’ struggles for type, Bottas admitted: “It is bizarre to see. I might guess [Hamilton] had some form of challenge, I do not know. It’s shocking to see them struggling, however it’s additionally good to have the ability to battle with them.

“I believe this was form of one of the best case state of affairs for my first season with Alfa Romeo that I might ever think about, with the data I had. I am actually proud of the choice I made, and I am pleased total as nicely. So yeah, [I’m] having fun with it.”

Bottas will begin Sunday’s race in eighth, whereas Hamilton admitted he might make modifications to his Mercedes which might imply a pit-lane begin. Mick Schumacher, in the meantime, won’t partake in any respect after his high-speed crash noticed him taken to hospital earlier than Haas confirmed that he got here by unscathed. 

Schumacher’s absence signifies that if Hamilton does determine to begin on the grid, he will probably be bumped as much as fifteenth.

Valtteri Bottas makes 'weird' Lewis Hamilton comment as Mercedes' stuttering form pondered

Sergio Perez produced a sensational lap to take pole place in Saudi Arabia (Picture: GETTY)

Whereas the Brit will probably be on a mission to work his means by the pack, there may be loads of potential for drama in entrance of Bottas too. Sergio Perez pulled out a shocking lap to out-qualify each Ferraris and team-mate Max Verstappen and declare the primary pole place of his profession. 

Bottas’ Alfa Romeo team-mate, Guanyu Zhou, in the meantime, will begin in twelfth after one other stable qualifying efficiency in his rookie season. The Chinese language teen completed tenth to attain some extent on his F1 debut final day trip.

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