Bottas won't be No.2 to Hamilton yet, insists F1 title 'goal' still on in 2021

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Valtteri Bottas isn't worried he'll be asked to play a No.2 role to Lewis Hamilton as he eyes his own Formula 1 championship bid.

The seven-time world champion and Red Bull's Max Verstappen are currently in a league of their own at the top of the standings, with Bottas already 47 points behind his teammate after four races.

Given the very close battle at the front, it would make sense for Mercedes to deploy Bottas solely in a support role to Hamilton and attempting to take points off Verstappen.

However, the Finn is adamant he hasn't given up on his own title aspirations this year. 

“I’m not worried to be honest, not at all,” he said on the prospect of team orders.

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“I know there’s a bit of a gap now, but it’s super early days. There’s no point starting to think about that.

“There is still a huge amount of points. I’m definitely not giving up on the goal for this year.

“I believe hard work will pay off, so I’ll keep working hard and keep believing. I know the results will come.

“There’s been no clean races for me yet. There’s always something, a crash or an issue with a pit-stop or whatever, so I’m keen to have a clean race and battle for the win.

“And it’s going to be an epic battle. I’m definitely ready.”

Bottas has vowed to take a more "selfish" approach this season, and the first example of that came in Spain when he admitted to not immediately letting Hamilton through despite being told not to hold him up.


Lewis' eventual win prevented any sizeable fallout from that, and instead team boss Toto Wolff has praised Valtteri's performance.

“I keep saying he's very strong. He's in a good place and he keeps scoring," the Austrian told

“[In qualifying in Spain] it was three drivers within a tenth, the weekend before he was on pole. So his speed is enormous. It's just that when things go wrong at the start, or you're in a gaggle with other cars and you lose time to the leaders, that's basically K.O.

“And behind Charles [Leclerc], I don't know how much time he lost… 20 seconds or so. And then obviously it's where you are, you're third on the road at best.”