Credits: IMAGO / Michael Potts
Apart from being a fascinating F1 driver, Valtteri Bottas is also known for his cycling skills. The Sauber driver is so exceptionally talented in this category for which he oozes extreme confidence. So much so that he feels unbeatable against any driver in the current F1 grid when it comes to cycling.
In a video by Global Cycling Network, the Finnish driver confidently declared himself as the fastest cyclist in Formula 1 currently. When asked, “Who do you think is the fastest Formula 1 driver on the bike?” Bottas replied “Me,” that too without any hesitation. This clearly means he regards himself as faster than the fastest drivers in F1 like Max Verstappen or Lewis Hamilton.
Notably, when it comes to cycling, Bottas is a different breed. The former Mercedes star takes cycling as his hobby as well as passion. Whenever he’s away from the sport, he’s seen going on rides on his bike accompanied by Tiffany Cromwell, his partner.
Even during the race weekends, Bottas finds a place to go for a ride. For instance, ahead of the 2023 Australian Grand Prix, he took out a few people to go on a ride with him and Cromwell in Beachport, South Australia. Apart from the Land Down Under, the Finnish driver never misses a chance to go cycling ahead or after a race weekend.
When one looks at Bottas’s Instagram account, he or she will find more cycling posts than posts related to F1. Therefore, he is clearly the best one on the grid when it comes to cycling, even when he’s not the fastest driver on the grid. However, Bottas has not been in the fastest car since he moved to the Swiss team from Brackley after 2021.
Furthermore, the #77 driver is not even in the same league as Verstappen or Hamilton in the last few years. The Dutchman won three F1 titles in a row, while Bottas’s former teammate was often on the podium in a struggling Mercedes. Nevertheless, Bottas revealed he is happy to pursue his hobby, which is cycling, and doing better mentally following his Mercedes exit.
Valtteri Bottas doing well after he left Mercedes
Even though Valtteri Bottas isn’t achieving much success at his current team, he is happy nonetheless. The Finn explained that he has better mental health at the Swiss team than he had in the Silver Arrows.
The primary reason behind this was the need to succeed. Mercedes, a top team, constantly asks utmost performance and results from its drivers. Therefore, Bottas had never-ending pressure to deliver week in and week out. But now, he’s in a much better place as Sauber does not have a similar ask from its drivers.
Sauber is a lower midfield team and thus cannot afford to ask Bottas for race wins or even podiums. On a good day, Bottas and his team can fetch points but that will be all, for now.
Therefore, Valtteri Bottas managed to cope with this situation pretty well. This allowed him to have time for other businesses as well. He recently developed a partnership with Oliver’s Taranga Vineyards from the McLaren Vale region of Australia. This was his new venture into the world of wine.
Apart from racing, the 34-year-old very deeply indulged himself in cycling with his purchase of a track near the same region. The 10-time Grand Prix winner co-founded Rattle Gravel, along with his partner Cromwell and professional cyclist Amy Charity. It is a mass gravel event for everyone from pro racers to regular cyclists.
Most recently, the Sauber driver went cycling in Australia during the winter break. He took part in the National Cycling Event in Australia where he finished 21st in his class. All in all, Valtteri Bottas is indeed the fastest cyclist in the current Formula 1 grid, and for more reasons than one.