Valtteri Bottas’ crash at Hungarian GP will not influence decision over his Mercedes future ‘at all’, insists boss Toto Wolff as he claims incident was ‘unfortunate’ despite George Russell vying to partner Lewis Hamilton
- Valtteri Bottas was involved in a crash on turn 1 at the Hungarian Grand Prix
- The Finn has apologised for his mistake and was hit with five-place grid penalty
- Mercedes chief Toto Wolff said it won’t factor into decision over Bottas’ future
Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff has thrown his backing behind Valtteri Bottas after his crash at the Hungarian Grand Prix, and insists the incident won’t play into the decision over his future.
Bottas’ mistake on turn one in Budapest saw him slide into the rear of Lando Norris, with the McLaren man then crashing into Red Bull’s Max Verstappen – and the Finn also continued to career into Sergio Perez.
All drivers were forced to retire except for Verstappen, and it resulted in Bottas – who took full responsibility for the crash – being hit with a five-place grid penalty for the Belgian Grand Prix after the summer break.
Valtteri Bottas caused a major crash at the Hungarian Grand Prix on the weekend
But his mistake will not influence his future as George Russell (R) vies to replace him next year
Wolf called the incident ‘unfortunate’ and said it had nothing to do with the selection process for next season – with George Russell competing to partner Lewis Hamilton.
Russell himself enjoyed a great race and finished eighth – scoring his first points with Williams – and he will hope to usurp Bottas next year.
‘No, the mistake was unfortunate with big consequences,’ Wolff said, via Autosport.
‘He got sandwiched by the two cars in front, lost all downforce, and then it was already too late.
‘It doesn’t influence at all the decision.’
Mercedes boss Toto Wolff (L) called the incident ‘unfortunate’ after he was hit with a five-place grid penalty for the Belgian Grand Prix
Bottas admitted his season has not gone according to plan after his third DNF so far
Speaking after his crash, Bottas admitted this F1 season has ‘not gone my way’, after his third DNF so far, but is positive he is making progress and is positive he can make headway in the races to come.
‘At least in the last few races, it feels like it’s been slightly positive, getting some podiums and more points,’ Bottas said.
‘But now I have three DNFs, which is quite a lot in terms of points, so it’s not been great.
‘But there’s still more than half to go in terms of number of races and we keep going.’