As he prepares for 2021, Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas sets his sights on challenging teammate Lewis Hamilton in the coming season.

Bottas says his efforts for the season have already begun with “hard training”, and insists that off-season work has kept him in-shape since the close fo the F1 season in late 2020. The Finn also says that he has not begun Mercedes’ workout regimen.

“At this point of the year it’s hard training, focusing on physical development and building a base,” Bottas started, on the sidelines of Pelicans’ Ice Hockey practice session. “It was actually one of the reasons why I so gladly went for a practice on ice. [I am] trying to get as many practices as possible, focusing on endurance and strength.

“There’s still some time left before the team programme starts so there’s time to spend in the cabin for training,” Bottas said. He restates that his goal is to compete more directly to Hamilton, to whom he has come second in 2019 and 2020, and remains of the belief that he can achieve this by focusing on his individual performance.

“Obviously there is only one goal,” Bottas began. “As a team we’ve performed on the top for many years in a row and won the constructor’s championship [seven times]. My teammate [Lewis Hamilton] has beaten me for many years so my only goal is to beat him.

“I just focus on my own doing and let nothing disturb that. Keeping the focus on my own performances, I believe the season will be good,” Bottas said. He adds that, whoever may drive alongside him, he will feel compelled to beat them.

“It doesn’t matter [if Lewis is in the other Mercedes]. Every driver in F1 is really skilled so whoever it is will be a tough opponent. Like I said before it’s better to focus on my own doing,” Bottas concluded.

Here’s Toto Wolff on term of Lewis Hamilton contract

Here’s James Allison on performance levels returning to 2019

Here’s last from Toto Wolff on contract and more

Here’s Valtteri Bottas trying Ice Hockey

Here’s Mercedes with new race bays

Here’s news on Frederik Vesti becoming Mercedes junior

Here’s how Valtteri Bottas did in Arctic Lapland Rally