Gutted Bottas feels he also 'lost the F1 championship because Lewis did'

Valtteri Bottas has admitted he’s “gutted” for Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton after he lost the Formula 1 drivers’ title to Max Verstappen on the final lap.
Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Mercedes AMG F1 W12 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W12.
Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Mercedes AMG F1 W12 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR)…

After leading the majority of the race, Hamilton lost out to Verstappen after the late Safety Car period in controversial circumstances which have resulted in Mercedes protesting the final result. 

It was a difficult race for Bottas, who dropped from sixth to eighth on the opening lap and struggled for pace throughout.

The Finn was fourth at the Safety Car restart but dropped behind both AlphaTauris on the final lap. 

Even though Mercedes managed to secure a record-breaking eighth consecutive constructors’ championship, Bottas wasn’t in a mood to celebrate.

“Of course, we wanted to get both titles,” Bottas said. “Getting the constructors’ again is huge but at the same time it hurts that Lewis didn’t get the drivers’... even for me, I feel like I lost the championship because he lost it.

“I really feel gutted for him because I feel like he deserved it today. He had a great start, a great race and then things changed like this. That’s the sport, that’s how it goes and sometimes it goes against, and sometimes it goes for you but today was not our day.”

Bottas’ five-year tenure with the team comes to an end as he makes the switch to Alfa Romeo for 2022.

Bottas says he has “mixed feelings” about how it ended in Abu Dhabi but wanted to look at the bigger achievement and what he achieved at the team alongside Hamilton.

“It’s mixed emotions, like I said, I am happy for the constructors’ and really proud but at the same time, I feel for Lewis,” he added.

“Now it’s time for something new and I am really proud and thankful what we’ve achieved together. We’ve done great things. It wasn’t maybe the best race to finish it but need to look at the big picture - we won five constructors’. 

“With Lewis, we’ve been the most successful teammate pairing in the history of F1 so it’s kind of sad to leave but of course I look forward to the future.”

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