Valtteri Bottas is aiming to put more pressure on Formula 1 teammate Lewis Hamilton during their second year as teammates as Mercedes through 2018, claiming that the four-time world champion is beatable across the course of a season.

Bottas joined Mercedes in January 2017 following world champion Nico Rosberg's shock retirement, and enjoyed a solid first year with the German manufacturer by taking three race wins en route to third place in the drivers' championship.

A late-season dip in form saw Bottas finish the year 58 points behind Hamilton and score six fewer wins, but the Finn remains confident he has what it takes to beat his teammate over a 21-race season.

"I think he is," Bottas said when asked if Hamilton could be beaten.

"He’s the toughest teammate I’ve ever had. he’s one of the best drivers ever in F1. He was the best driver last season.

"There’s no driver that is unbeatable. That’s what I believe. I believe in myself also. I believe in all the things I have been learning since the five years I’ve been in F1.

"I was able to show that I can do it in many races - not during 21 races every time but I know it’s there, I know it’s possible. That’s my thinking."

While Mercedes enjoyed a good deal of harmony within the team after a fraught title fight between Hamilton and Rosberg the previous year, team boss Toto Wolff has said he would like to see a little more tension between his drivers if they fight closer together on-track.

"I would like to put more pressure on Lewis on track and be battling wheel to wheel with him more often than last year. If I perform well, then that’s going to be the case and that will naturally cause some tension," Bottas said.

"That can be a positive thing and makes both of us try even more to leave no stones unturned in terms of performance and keeps us pushing even more.

"I think he means he wants us both to be peforming on a 100 percent level, and at the same time it can be some healthy competition."



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