Valtteri Bottas joined Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost in an exclusive club after his record-making appearance during Saudi qualifying, as reported by Beyond the Flag.
Bottas’ five years at Mercedes have seen him largely play a secondary role in the team. However, he did something not even his illustrious teammate has done, and that is become the third driver in history to complete 100 consecutive top ten qualifications.
At the Jeddah Corniche Circuit, Bottas went second-fastest overall and etched his name into the history books. The record began at the 2017 Australian GP, and a 100 sessions later, the 32-year-old Finn has achieved a great feat.
It is a testament to his consistency and reliability throughout his career. Many great drivers have come and gone since the Senna-Prost days, but none had achieved this monumental feat until the ten-time race winner.
Valtteri Bottas becomes only the third driver to qualify in the top ten at 100 consecutive races!— Lights Out ●●●●● (@LightsOutF1Blog) December 4, 2021
Senna: ?? 1985 – ?? 1994 (137 races)
Prost: ?? 1983 – ?? 1990 (109 races)
Bottas: ?? 2017 – ?? 2021 (100 races)@ValtteriBottas @MercedesAMGF1 #SaudiArabianGP #F1
Who else is in there?
Senna is the king of the record, having pulled off a staggering 137 consecutive top ten qualifications. His streak began at the 1985 Dutch GP at Zandvoort, and came to a close at the 1994 San Marino GP, where he tragically crashed and passed away.
Had that not happened, we may have seen Senna storm to more great qualifications.
Second place is owned by Prost, who has 109 such results to his name. His run began at the 1983 Canadian GP, and ended seven years later at the exact same track.
The two legends have been joined by Bottas. The Mercedes driver’s record is extra special because he is the only one to do it in one team. He has one more qualifying session with Mercedes before he leaves the team for Alfa Romeo.
Every Bottas fan will be hoping his new team gets their act together and delivers a solid car. If that is done, we could see the TikTok king beat Prost and maybe even Senna.
Read more: Valtteri Bottas points finger at ‘bad timing’ from Toto Wolff in Qatar GP radio message