Nico Rosberg believes Valtteri Bottas is doing a "good job" of getting under Lewis Hamilton's skin in their teammate rivalry at Mercedes, praising the Finn for his change in approach since last season.

Bottas bounced back from a winless 2018 campaign by taking a dominant victory in the F1 season-opener in Australia two weeks ago, beating Hamilton by 20 seconds.

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Talk ahead of this weekend's Bahrain Grand Prix has centered on Bottas' apparent change in approach as he looks to try and gain an edge over Hamilton for this season. While Hamilton said he saw no difference in his teammate compared to last year, Bottas himself said on Thursday he is now in a different mindset for racing in F1 this year.

Rosberg famously beat then-teammate Hamilton to the F1 drivers' championship in 2016, and said on Saturday in Bahrain that he believes Bottas is doing a good job of taking steps to gain the upper-hand at Mercedes.

"Valtteri is really trying to get under Lewis’ skin at the moment. He’s giving everything, and I think he’s doing a good job," Rosberg told Sky Sports F1.

"It’s always small steps at a time, and you’ve got to pull Lewis down from his high-flying confidence. He’s doing it, and then you start to see Lewis getting a few doubts and things like that. That’s the way to go for him.

"I think he’s done a very good job over the winter to reset. He sent a few messages with the beard, over the radio in Melbourne, a rather strong message, the race start, an awesome start - all these things add up.

"It just gives you this momentum and self-confidence that you need."

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