Valtteri Bottas: “What I need is to win races”

© Steve Etherington for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.

Despite being beaten to pole position by team-mate and title rival Lewis Hamilton, Valtteri Bottas hopes to keep his championship lead.

Bottas’ time in Hungarian Grand Prix Qualifying was just over a tenth slower than Lewis Hamilton’s.

“My laps were okay,” explained the Finn after the session.

“At the end, the Q3 lap was actually pretty good but I just couldn’t go faster. Lewis did a great job today to get the pole.

“I knew and I saw in FP3 that it was going to be a close battle with Lewis at least, I think as a team we were on a really strong level, pretty far from other teams which is obviously good for us.”

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However Bottas hopes to best his team-mate in the race tomorrow.

“As always, it is going to be a bit of a drag race into turn one,” the Finn said.

“I look forward to that. What I need is to win races to maintain that so that is going to be my only goal tomorrow and I’m sure the first lap will be interesting.”

Just like Lewis, when informed of Red Bull’s gap, Bottas was surprised.

“Of course, I don’t know the details of how their session went. Was it nice and clean or were there other issues?

“The whole weekend they’ve not really been that close, so surprising.”

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