Why? Bottas' had his strategy changed to undercut Verstappen, it did not work but that was due to the loss of around 10 seconds which was hardly his fault and then lost more time due to potting to get the point for fastest lap. These lost him around 30 seconds and he finished 37 seconds behind Hamilton. In other words he was around 7 seconds slower in a 100 minutes race.
Not bad for a second driver who is a known to follow orders.
bottas is doing a good job for what Mercedes are expecting from him, & red bull would rip your hand off for a top 4 finish consistently over the last few years. but Bottas was never at any point competitive with the front 2 & as ive mentioned Bottas has 9 wins since 2017 Max verstappen in inferior machinery has 10, also before the error he was 8 seconds behind, at no point was he very threatened,
it might be just timing, russell wont be at williams next year, we all know he is far too good to be a backmarker. i feel we are in the verstappen territory in 2017 where they are in "use it or lose it" as we all know the sharks were circling at ferrari & mercedes.
Spanish Grand Prix winner Lewis Hamilton has said he wants to hit the negotiating table early this season, after the seven-time champion revealed that holding contract talks across last year’s winter break had “ruined” his off-season.
The problem with Verstappen at Mercedes is his team mate, Mercedes want the Constructors Championship finding a driver like Bottas may not be easy and even Bottas could be a problem as he is quick enough at times to upset Verstappen's super ego especially in qualifying. Buying a driver quick enough but subservient to give Max the star status without overt team orders which Mercedes don't like would be a problem. Lewis accepts Bottas is quicker in some occasions, I'm not sure Max would.
hamilton will be here next year, he has said as much which is surprising & motivation that is even more impressive because still have that hunger when you have no to prove & nothing to strive for, as you broke every record
but i cant see verstappen at mercedes because if hamilton saying then Russell will have to be at mercedes in 2022 because it is use him or lose him, as this is russell last year at williams. so weirdly i cant see verstappen & russell at mercedes but weirdly i can seem them at red bull. because if bottas is signed up. then christian horner will swoop on him like you wouldnt believe