Why are Finns ‘really worried’ about Valtteri Bottas

Valtteri Bottas finished P11 at the Australian Grand Prix and was one of two drivers to finish but not score points.

Valtteri Bottas’ home nation is getting increasingly concerned about the Alfa Romeo driver’s future in Formula 1, with the Finn having endured a nightmare start to the 2023 F1 season.

Since leaving Mercedes for the Hinwil-based team at the end of 2021, things started very well for Bottas, with the 33-year-old having shown great pace last season.

2023 has so far been a very different story, though, with the Finn having struggled since the Bahrain Grand Prix.

Bottas was strong at the season-opener and claimed a solid eighth place finish, something which gave him an excellent platform to build on.

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However, at the following Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, he finished eighteenth and was the last of the running drivers.

Last weekend’s Australian Grand Prix was also very disappointing for the ex-Mercedes driver, as he was just one of two drivers not to score points.

Only 12 drivers finished at the Albert Park Circuit on Sunday, with Bottas having finished P11.

Finnish media are normally very supportive of their driver, but things have started to change since Melbourne.

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“The Finn should grab himself by the neck,” the editorial at Iltalehti newspaper read.

“Funny hair and a relaxed beach style cannot be the focus of an F1 professional, especially if the teammate is ahead in both qualifying and the race.

“Australia turned out to be the sort of race in which a lot of points could have been taken.”

Finnish F1 pundit Ossi Oikarinen added that not finishing in the points in Melbourne will have left Bottas “worried”, given that eight drivers retired.

“That’s acceptable,” Oikarinen told Viaplay.

“As Valtteri himself said, now you have to be worried. There is a fundamental error somewhere.”

Finnish racing driver Toni Vilander was another to question Bottas’ performance and his “hunger” in particular, with Vilander having admitted that he’s “really worried” about the Alfa Romeo driver’s future.

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“Valtteri should always be 10–20 seconds ahead of his teammate in the race result,” Vilander said. “Then we would be in a normal situation.

“But if only places 12 and 16 are possible, then Valtteri should be twelfth rather than his Chinese teammate (Guanyu Zhou) being there.

“That’s why I’m really worried.”