The Mexico City Grand Prix was not one of the most positive GPs of Valtteri Bottas’, career.
A race that was also affected by the contact he had with Daniel Ricciardo's McLaren, immediately after turn 1, which forced the two drivers to pit early, and to end up in the queue.
The Finnish driver, in fact, after a good Saturday as a poleman, finished the race on Sunday in twelfth position.
“Today was picturesque,” – Bottas commented to Motorlat and other selected media – “Since the spin in turn one with the hit from Daniel, we were really compromised and the best chance we had to get by was stopping twice.”
“He really ruined my day today,” - Bottas said about the crash with Ricciardo, while joking, - “Obviously I’m sure he didn’t do the initial hit on purpose and it compromised his race as well, but that was not ideal for my race today.”
“The race was as hard as we expected, as it was back in 2019. The big thing here is to not overheat the engine or the brakes so you cannot push. We did a lot of lift and coast.
“It could have been a lot better, Saturday was good, I was happy with the qualifying obviously, but it should have been a lot better," he added.
The episode that caused a safety car on the first lap was also commented by one of the two drivers directly involved, Daniel Ricciardo, who explained:
“I went to the inside of Perez. I do remember locking at one point and, replaying it in my head over the next 70 laps, I thought I locked and went up into Valtteri.”
“It looked like I locked in the straight-line phase and then actually recovered before turning in, and it looked like there was just not enough room.
“Valtteri came across, probably expecting him to have a bit of clear track and then there was Perez and me. So I don’t really blame Valtteri," He stated.
Then the Aussie admitted that he was too optimistic for braking like that in turn 1:
“Obviously, I’m the one that hit him. But honestly, looking at the replay, I just think it’s a first-lap incident and a matter of maybe me being optimistic.
"But I feel that one of those gaps, if you don’t go for it, someone else will and then you’re going to get the short end of the straw.”
The stewards decided not to open any investigation on the incident, but Ricciardo admitted that he was still “disappointed” with his race.
“I’m still going to be hard on myself and I never want to ruin my race on lap one,” – he said - “But if it’s possible to feel any better, I feel slightly better after seeing the replay.
“And it was actually quite a small hit."