Bottas takes first rally victory at Paul Ricard

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In the round-up: Valtteri Bottas scored his breakthrough rally victory last weekend.

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As Pietro Fittipaldi eyes a chance to break into F1, are we seeing too many well-connected relations at the upper end of motor sport?

Please, not another relation of a previous grand Prix driver. It just proves that money and connections mean more than racing talent. I refuse to believe all these sons of racing drivers are the best drivers in the world.

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On this day in F1

  • On this day in 1993 Ayrton Senna appeared before the World Motor Sports Council, charged with punching Eddie Irvine at the Japanese Grand Prix

Image: Valtteri Bottas via Twitter

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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15 comments on “Bottas takes first rally victory at Paul Ricard”

  1. Good job! Man of many talents.

  2. I hope MotoGP uses that Malaysian GP track for a night race.

  3. :D What kinda rally was this?

    Every other competitor was French. Bottas and co-driver destroyed them, but then they would, considering he is a world class driver facing local competition.

    Is there any footage of this?

    1. @jureo At least the Circuit Paul Ricard YT-channel has some footage of the event. For example, here’s onboard footage of Bottas over an entire stage:

      1. I found it aswell.

        This is an excellent representation, how an F1 driver drives a “regular” car.

        6 minutes, without mistakes, brilliant, hitting every apex, every rotation is well judged, trail braking, keeping the nose gripping, collecting the rear with minimum time loss.

        Like watching poetry.

        F1 drivers should have to attend events like this, just so we can appreciate skill that goes in to their art.

        1. How Botas drives you mean. Not all F1 drivers would take to Rally so well.

          1. Yea you do have a point. It is a totally different skill to driving an F1 car and lots of f1 drivers could well not even be close to the average rally driver.

  4. So Sepang got the floodlighting infrastructure in place only after it had stopped hosting an F1 race, LOL.

    1. Re COTD i guess you might (might as in not sure) be wrong there. I mean something as far from a human’s “natural” skillset as motorracing, there really probably isn’t such a thing as ‘natural talent’. what we perceive as talent is most likely just a very thoroughly learnt skill At a rather young age that has almost become instinctive. and Who is more likely to spend a lot of time in karts at a very young age already…?

    2. sorry didn’t mean to reply

    3. In that respect, I’m happy to see that Sepang has life after F1 and have moved onwards, and are hopefully successful.

      It’s just a shame that F1 doesn’t race there anymore.

    4. I’m not entirely sure whether I would have enjoyed F1 at Sepang “under the lights”. Floodlights have their benefits, for example when you want to show off a magnificent 21st century city skyline (Singapore) or you want to hide the fact a circuit is in the middle of nowhere (Sakhir). Sepang is neither of those things and sits in quite nice looking countryside… so it doesn’t really need the lights.

      1. I think the night races add a little something e.g.the sparks and the way it changes how the liveries look. Also it benefits Bahrain for the same reasons @geemac says it’s bad for sepang – it means you don’t have to see the uninspiring desert countryside!

  5. Jeffrey Powell
    9th December 2019, 14:48

    Botas obviously enjoys driving in the rally style , I know he has taken part in other more traditional Finnish events up against experienced drivers with some sucess. Many,Many, Many years ago F1 drivers were more experienced in driving conventional racing saloons , these of course were far closer to their F1 cars in dynamics. And of course they could transfer their considerable skills to international rallies if they were brave enough. Enter Jim Clark genius, unfortunately those days are gone forever.

  6. This Paul Ricard circuit has real walls and is messy but nice. Maybe a thought for next year to spice things up there.
    It needs a lot of spicing as host of the most boring race of the century

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