Lewis Hamilton, Valtteri Bottas, Sebastian Vettel, Circuit de Catalunya, 2019

Mercedes are ‘not considering Vettel’, says Bottas

2020 F1 season

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Sebastian Vettel is not in contention for a drive at Mercedes next year, Valtteri Bottas believes.

The Ferrari driver confirmed last month he will not drive for the team again in the 2021 F1 season. Bottas and team mate Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes contracts with the team both expire at the end of this season, prompting speculation Mercedes could make a move for the four-times world champion.

However Bottas told Sky today Mercedes have given him assurances about any interest they may have in Vettel.

“We’ve been very honest about what the situation is all the time about contracts, and I got a pretty straight message that no, they’re not considering Seb. So I said fine, no worries then.”

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff said last week Vettel could be considered if Bottas or Hamilton were to leave the team.

Several driver moves for 2021 have already been confirmed despite the new season not having started yet. Bottas said he was not concerned about the possibility of losing his seat next year.

“It’s the same as every year for me,” he said. “I find it quite funny that with not even a single race done there’s been people getting my seat. It made me laugh. So there’s no pressure from that side.”

Bottas joined Mercedes from Williams in 2017. He has signed one-year deals with the team each season since his arrival.

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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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13 comments on “Mercedes are ‘not considering Vettel’, says Bottas”

  1. Just watched the interview. It’s impossible to read the guy lol.

    Mercedes always had an open culture. So it’s important that Toto made that remark about Vettel.

    He had a very good season last year, and was very close with Lewis for the most part. He was always good at the Red Bull Ring, and having two races there would definitely help him go for the championship (if Red Bull doesn’t steal the show). Best of luck in the new season Valtteri!

    1. A very good season? 2019 vettel not only made mistakes, he was also slow, he was better in 2018 (only mistake-prone) and better in 2017 (that was a decent season).

      1. @esploratore Serkan is talking about Bottas LOL re-read his comment

  2. bottas is a good boy, why would you want any other? you might get a bad boy instead.

    1. A Prost/Senna situation might be what the sport need right now

      1. Yes, but it’s probably not what MGP needs

      2. @melthom Vettel would most likely be worse than Bottas anyway, so a Prost/Senna situation is unlikely.

        1. @f1osaurus That’s a very bold assertion. What makes you say that?

          1. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
            12th June 2020, 14:13

            Well Bottas was better than Vettel last year and I would probably overall say that balanced out since 2017, Bottas has been about equal to Vettel, but is looking to be better now. Bottas may have had a “bad” 2018 according to many, but he wasn’t crashing and spinning like Vettel constantly does, he just wasn’t close to the best driver on the grid (who was his team mate), which isn’t as bad as many seem to think. He was excellent in the first half of 2018 and over the season, missed 2 fully deserved wins (China and Russia) as well as two others (Baku and Germany) that may or will have been possible without team orders or bad luck. Even silvestone could have been possible had Mercedes pitted him sooner. He was lucky to get into the lead there, but he handled 2 or 3 sefety car restarts perfectly but right near the end, vettel and several others passed him pretty much bang on the lap his tyres had gone past the recommended number of laps by pirelli. Despite his poor 2nd half, I think Bottas’s 2018 season was remembered for this and ignored that he was actually very good to begin with.

            Bottas just hadn’t made anywhere near the level of mistakes Vettel has in the past few years, so I don’t think I would argue if some thing Bottas is better now. Vettel may be able to turn around though.

  3. So based on his words above, it’s either him or Russell for the other 2021 drive (assuming Hamilton stays). Seb’s running out of options for next year. Only Renault and teams lower down the grid, and I doubt he’d be willing to join the midfield. I predict he isn’t going to be driving in F1 next year.

    1. Or they’re not considering him because they’ve decided on him? :P

  4. Adam (@rocketpanda)
    11th June 2020, 12:19

    He’s probably right that Merc aren’t really considering Vettel right now because currently they don’t need to. Doesn’t mean they won’t later, and really if they secretly were I’d be surprised they’d actually communicate that to Bottas anyway.

    1. I think it could also be one of those times when a boss tries to embrace someone and says “its ok, your job isnt at risk. just do what you do best” to try and take the pressure off to get them to perform better. Which does seem in line with Toto’s style

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