Lewis Hamilton: I Don’t Need To Defend Valtteri Bottas’ Performance

Lewis Hamilton ran away with the 2020 F1 Drivers’ Championship, while his Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas narrowly fended off Max Verstappen to finish in P2.

Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas Mercedes F1 2020 season finale - Formula1news.co.uk

2020 was a difficult year for Valtteri Bottas, with him once again being outperformed by his Mercedes team-mate, Lewis Hamilton, and the Finn almost losing out on second place in the F1 Drivers’ Championship to Max Verstappen.

It should be recognised that Bottas suffered an awful lot of bad luck this year, but even on his good days, Hamilton usually came out on top.

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Commenting on his team-mate’s performance last season, Lewis Hamilton praised the Finn and said he doesn’t feel the need to “defend” Bottas.

“I don’t think Valtteri needs to defend his performance, and I don’t feel like I need to,” Hamilton said in an interview on Saturday.

“I think he’s continued to work at it, and we’ve definitely had very, very close qualifyings, particularly this year.

“Like I said before, it’s never easy having strong team-mates. It’s a constant battle between you, both mentally and emotionally throughout the year.

“What’s really great with us is that we fight it out hard on-track, but then when we’re outside, we manage to maintain a gentleman working relationship, and I think that’s a big showing of his personality and character as a man.

“I know next year he is going to be taking more steps, so I’ve got to work a way and figure out how I can find some more speed for next year,” the seven-time World Champion added.

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Earlier, Hamilton said that the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement provided him with extra motivation to perform well on track last season.

Despite not yet inking a new deal with Mercedes, the Brit will almost certainly still be racing with the Silver Arrows next year as he chases his eighth F1 title.

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