What he lacks in loqaciousness he makes up for in speed – but despite your best efforts, he’s resolutely tight-lipped about a future with Ferrari
PHOTOS Like so many Finnish racing drivers, Valtteri Bottas is a man of decidedly few words. He scans the deck of cards, upon which are inscribed the questions that you, the readers of F1 Racing, have sent in for him to answer. His look suggests he’s wondering how quickly he can rattle through them. Unlike his team-mate Felipe Massa, who can quickly become very animated when talking about a subject, Valtteri remains cool, clipped and to the point at all times.
We’ve met up with Valtteri outside the Williams hospitality unit in the Russian Grand Prix paddock, on a day bathed in warm sunshine.
At one point this summer, the F1 rumour mill had Bottas denitely moving to Ferrari for 2016, replacing compatriot Kimi Räikkönen. But when Kimi was conrmed for one more year in red, Williams swiftly announced that Bottas, too, would be staying put, for a fourth season. For a country with a population of only 5.4 million, it’s quite a feat to have placed two of its sons with top F1 teams. Which is something Valtteri tackles head-on as he picks up the rst question card… Finland produces F1 world champions and other very successful drivers, despite its small population. Any ideas why? Jan Krwawicz, UK That’s the one everyone asks and it’s very tricky for me to answer. I think our mentality is a little bit different from some other countries, as we are kind of lonely. What I mean is that we don’t mind being alone and we do things as we see best and I think that helps in racing. Plus, the competition in karting in Finland is at a very high level. I remember racing when I was six or seven and there were a lot of very good drivers. Back then, if you wanted to win you really needed to work hard at it.
If you could listen to only one music album for the rest of your life, which one would you choose and why? Gergely Jaksa, Hungary It would have to be The Offspring album, Americana, because I’ve been listening to that since I was a kid and, as time has gone on, it’s always come back onto my playlist. So that’s an easy choice really.