Valtteri Bottas has denied comments saying he was in Lewis Hamilton’s shadow during his time at Mercedes.

The Finn announced that he would be leaving Mercedes at the end of the season. He will be joining Alfa Romeo at the start of the 2022 season. Bottas has been with the German team for five seasons, and was an exceptional team player, helping his team to four titles in a row.

The Race recently asked him about his move to Alfa, and how it felt to be away from the role of a shadow to Hamilton. Bottas noted the question, and denied comments saying he was in Hamilton’s shadow.

“That’s why it’s really exciting and interesting for me to be in that kind of role and try to help the team forward and work together,” Bottas said.

Valtteri Bottas after qualifying at the 2021 Dutch GP.
Valtteri Bottas (pictured) denied that he was in Lewis Hamilton’s shadow. Source: the-race.com

“I don’t know about the shadow. Obviously if you look at the results overall, Lewis has been able to beat me every year, so in that sense yes, I’ve been in a shadow.

“But honestly now I don’t really feel it that way. We are a team, and we’re now in this together. Unfortunately, I’m not fighting for the Drivers’ World Championship anymore this year, so I’m just fighting for the Constructors’ and that’s the way it is.

“This is going to be a fresh start for me and whoever my team-mate is going to be I hope we’re going to work well together. This is an interesting new era for me,” he explained.

New beginning at Alfa Romeo

Bottas will join the Italian team soon, and revealed that he was in touch with multiple teams.

“I did talk to some other teams,” he said “I don’t want to say many names but in the end, that was the way I wanted to go.

“I’m glad that we could make it happen and also thankful for them to trust that I’m going to be the right fit for the team. It’s exciting, it’s a great brand, they have a great history in motorsport.

“I don’t want to share too much but we have high expectations, high goals and for me that is really motivating,” he concluded.

Read more: Verstappen takes sly dig at Hamilton after Dutch GP – “I can pass Bottas because he is very fair”

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