• Valtteri Bottas exclusive interview

Raring to go

Chris Medland October 22, 2012
ESPNF1 speaks exclusively to Valtteri Bottas about his Williams future, what he could bring to the team that's different from Pastor Maldonado and Bruno Senna and his back-up plans for 2013

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All of the talk has been about your future with Williams, but have you been talking to any other teams aside from Williams?
Not at the moment, no. Because really the ideal would be to stay with Williams and we are still waiting for news about next year from the team, so I hope we don't have to discuss it with any other teams.

How anxious are you to get a race seat next year, or are you more wanting to get a clear path to a race seat in the future?
I really want to get racing, that's for sure. This year has been quite tough already just watching on whilst they race on Sundays on a race weekend, so definitely need to get racing.

You've previously mentioned that GP2 wouldn't fit with any Friday practice time, is World Series by Renault on your mind?
Well, yeah that's the next step from [a race seat in Formula One]. It seems to be a good category, but like I said before hopefully we don't need to think about that.

What is it you think you can bring that's different to what Bruno and Pastor bring at the moment?
I think I can bring some young speed, I can bring some good speed and I think if I can get to drive more and get some experience I think I can still develop a lot and I think I can do a really good job.

Do you get jealous at all when you see other drivers getting a seat before you without having as much experience in a Formula One car - the likes of Esteban Gutierrez being tipped for a Sauber seat?
Of course I would like to be in F1 and would have liked to be already much before now. So when you see someone who you've been racing with - for example Daniel Ricciardo and Jean-Eric Vergne I race with in 2008 in Formula Renault, so they've got a race seat - for sure you are a bit jealous because you would like to be there as well. But hopefully it's coming.

Is the pressure that drivers are under to keep their seats a worry for you? If you look at Jaime Alguersuari and Sebastian Buemi before Ricciardo and Vergne, they were replaced perhaps harshly...
I know there's going to be pressure and there's always going to be in my career because I've been many times in the situation when it's not sure what I'm going to do next year. That has always meant that I need to get good results to secure the next season to move up. The most pressure comes from myself so I want to do well, I want to develop and minimise all the mistakes so I don't think that will be any problem.

How much do you think you've learnt this year with all the Friday drives for Williams?
A lot, and I'm still learning a lot. I cannot really say one thing, except maybe as the tyres are so difficult this year it's something that I still need to develop; just understanding about the tyres. But there's so much in Formula One that you can learn and that you can develop yourself.

So you think next year if you had another season of Friday drives alongside a different race category you'd still be learning during that time?
Yeah, definitely. Definitely. I think you never stop learning. As long as you are driving you never stop learning.

Chris Medland is assistant editor at ESPNF1

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Chris Medland is assistant editor at ESPNF1 Chris Medland, who in his youth even found the Pacific GPs entertaining, talked his way in to work at the British Grand Prix and was somehow retained for three years. He also worked on the BBC's F1 output prior to becoming assistant editor ahead of the 2011 season