Mercedes F1 Team Wins Race to Lock in 2019 Chauffeur Lineup


Valtteri Bottas is staying put, as Mercedes becomes the first team to complete its 2019 Formula 1 driver lineup

The deal for the 28-year-old is for 2019, with a team option for 2020. Bottas, who raced four seasons for Williams before coming to Mercedes for the 2017 season. In 30 races for Mercedes, Bottas has three wins, 17 podium finishes and five poles in 30 races.

Bottas is, however, winless in 2018. He’s fifth in the F1 driver standings, after finishing third a year ago.

“It is great news that I will be racing for Mercedes in 2019, and it is nice to announce it here in Hockenheim — not just the home race for Mercedes but also the circuit where I took my first ever single-seater win back in 2007,” said Bottas. “This year, with a full winter of preparation, I have been able to make a good step forward — and I believe that there is still more to come.”

Despite sitting fifth in the standings and 67 points back of leader Sebastian Vettel and 59 points behind teammate Lewis Hamilton, who on Thursday announced his own new two-year contract with the Silver Arrows, Bottas’ position doesn’t tell the full story of his season.
“We have not been so lucky in the races this year, but the team knows how I am performing, and this is a great sign of confidence in me and my driving,” continued Bottas. “I enjoy working with the team, and also being teammates with Lewis — we have a good relationship, honest and straightforward, and always aiming to get the right results for Mercedes. We have a big battle on our hands right now, so it’s good to have the future clear for everybody — it means we can have a full focus on the championship fight.

“Obviously, my goal is to keep performing at a high level — and to make it a no-brainer for the team when it comes to deciding their plans for 2020 as well.”

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