Racing Article

Bottas Extends Contract with Mercedes

Bottas Extends Contract with Mercedes Photo: TT
Bottas extends contract with Mercedes

Finnish driver Valtteri Bottas has agreed a one-year contract extension with Mercedes for 2021 worth 12 million.

He moved to the German-British Formula One team in 2017 following the shock retirement of former world champion Nico Rosberg, and has since won 8 Grand Prix with them, most recently in Austria last month, the first race of the truncated 2020 season.

Bottas is likely to continue his partnership with Lewis Hamilton, although the British world champion has not yet agreed a new contract with the team.

That is expected to be a formality, with Hamilton himself admitting that it is a matter of when, and not if, he puts pen to paper, although also saying that he feels slightly embarrassed to be negotiating what will undoubtedly be a very lucrative deal in the midst of the global pandemic.

The Bottas deal is thought to contain an option for a further year, although Mercedes will have a decision to make at the end of next year, providing that Hamilton commits to a multi-season deal. Stick with Bottas or promote young British driver George Russell, who is tipped as a potential successor to Hamilton.

The 21-year old, who is contracted to Mercedes, has been lent for three years to the uncompetitive Williams team to gain experience in the sport, but at some stage will need to be given his chance in a car capable of winning a race.

Bottas has agreed his new contract ahead of this weekends 70th Anniversary Formula One Grand Prix at Silverstone. And he will be hoping for better luck than he experienced in the British Grand Prix at the same circuit last weekend.

A strong second to Hamilton with two laps to go, his left front tyre suddenly deflated, causing him to lose speed and veer off the track. He limped to the pits to change tyres, but that cost him time, and he finished outside the points.

Race leader Hamilton suffered the same problem on the final lap. However, the Championship leader was able to guide is car home and claim the race victory, despite Max Verstappen rapidly closing on him.

Suneer chowdhary
Sports Pundit staff writer @suneerchowdhary
ICC-accredited cricket journalist, covers Team India through their cricketing journey around the world

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