Valtteri Bottas says that his team Mercedes AMG Petronas have already ruled out Sebastian Vettel, for a seat at the team in the 2021 FIA Formula 1 World Championship.
Scuderia Ferrari announced last month that Vettel would be leaving the team after contract negotiations broke down; this led to a ripple effect in the driver market as McLaren F1 Team’s Carlos Sainz Jr. left the team for Ferrari. It also saw Daniel Riccardo take up the free seat at McLaren alongside Lando Norris for 2021.
With those moves complete, rumours on where Vettel will move to have started; Toto Wolff, the team principal at Mercedes, said that a move for Vettel could not be ruled out. However, Bottas and Lewis Hamilton are the current focus as both drivers are out of contract at the end of the 2020 FIA Formula 1 World Championship.
Bottas, while talking to SkySports F1, explained he has no worries about his seat at Mercedes, claiming that the Silver Arrows have no plans to consider Vettel for his seat alongside Hamilton next season.
“No, it doesn’t get to you. We’ve been very honest also with my team all the time, what’s the situation, and how it’s going to be contract-wise.
“I got a pretty straight message that no, they are not considering Seb, so I said fine, no worries then.”
The Finn, joined Mercedes off the back of the 2016 FIA Formula 1 World Champion Nico Rosberg’s retirement. This has led to a string of one year deals being signed by Bottas at the team.
He made it clear the speculation is the same as every year for himself as he laughed about it, additionally he said that this season, he sees as no different to his other years with the World Champions.
“It’s the same as every year for me. It’s no different in any way than any other season for me. There are always talks, and the situation has been the same for me. I find it quite funny with not even a single race done, there’s been people getting my seat.
“It made me laugh a couple of times. There’s no pressure from that side, because I still have my clear goal for the season in my mind, and that’s it.
“Things will then sort themselves, one way or another, whatever is going to happen. I have no stress about that at all.”
Mercedes are expected to first get a contract with, Six-time world champion, Hamilton sorted first before they start on the choice of the second driver at the team. However, there are potential replacements for Bottas in George Russell and Esteban Ocon, who are both part of the Mercedes junior programme.