Valtteri Bottas says his repetition of his “to whom it may concern, fuck you” message after winning the Russian Grand Prix was aimed at his Formula 1 critics on social media.

Having made the same radio call after winning the 2019 Australian Grand Prix, Bottas repeated the message following his second victory of the 2020 season in Sochi, declaring it was a “nice moment to thank my critics”.

Speaking after ending a winless run that had spanned eight races, Bottas said the comment was in response to recent criticism he has received on social media.

Bottas had already directly replied to one particular criticism posted on one of his Instagram posts over the Russian Grand Prix before going on to win the race.

“Honestly, I just don't get the people who has the need to criticise people,” Bottas explained.

"There's been people telling me that I should 'not bother', I should 'give up', but how I am, I will never do that. So I just wanted to again send my best wishes to them. It just came out.

"But the main thing is I'm confident when I come to every race weekend and I believe I can do it and that's how I'm always going to be. You have to have that mindset.

"And I'm glad even [though] yesterday was tough, I didn't give up, I looked at the positives and I knew there would be opportunities. And things came to me today.

"So yeah, I hope I can encourage people not to give up because that's the biggest mistake you can do in your life."

Bottas capitalised on a double penalty for his Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton to trim the Briton’s world championship lead down to 44 points.

The Finn said his victory will provide him with a “good confidence boost” heading into the final seven races of the campaign.

“It’s been a while, but it’s been so close many times,” he added. “I feel my race pace especially this season has been quite a bit better than any season before. So I can’t say it’s been frustrating but it’s been a bit annoying that it’s been close, but nearly there.

“Things definitely did go my way today. I’ve been saying that things can go against you forever. So it’s definitely really satisfying today to get the win. It felt like it was well-earned.

“Obviously I consider myself lucky as well with Lewis’s penalty. But otherwise it was a strong race and I really feel that it can give me a good confidence boost and good momentum for the next races.”



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