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2017 F1

‘No panic’ despite late deal – Bottas

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Valtteri Bottas insists there is “no panic” even though he is still not signed up for 2018.

While the top teams fill their seats for next year, and even his teammate Lewis Hamilton is talking about a contract for 2019, Bottas still has no Mercedes deal beyond November’s Abu Dhabi finale.

However, Toto Wolff said at Spa a week ago that the ‘paperwork’ is now being done.

“You can never say that it’s 100 per cent certain when it’s not,” Bottas said at Monza.

“We need to sort everything out for sure,” the Finn told Ilta Sanomat newspaper.

“But my feelings have not changed and I’m not panicking — because I never have. I feel good about what I expect will happen.”

Probably a bigger concern for the 28-year-old is the spectre of having to shuffle into a supporting role for Hamilton for the balance of this season.

It comes after a particularly uncompetitive weekend at Spa.

“I have no clear answer as to why my pace was not good at Spa,” Bottas said. “Nothing wrong was found with my car.

“It will be interesting to see how my pace is here at Monza, with a clean slate,” he added.

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