Valtteri Bottas says Mercedes will be motivated to start 2021 in a strong position after its defeat to Red Bull at the season finale in Abu Dhabi on Sunday.
Max Verstappen led home the Mercedes duo of Bottas and Lewis Hamilton, with Red Bull taking its second race win of the 2020 campaign.
Mercedes failed to pose a challenge to Red Bull throughout weekend, as it also missed out on pole position as well as the race victory.
Bottas states that Mercedes will be pushing to ensure that Red Bull doesn’t pose a challenge to it next year, as it chases its eighth consecutive double World Championship.
“I’ve had much worse races this year, so it’s actually, in this kind of season, one of the good ones for me,” Bottas said.
“At least it was nice and clean. Start was good and everything – so could have been a worse way to end the season.
“And actually, if we think about the big pictures, now in this team, being beaten by Red Bull at the last race of the season, for sure it motivates us even more to work hard over the winter for next year to make sure this doesn’t happen again.”
With the Brackley-based squad missing out on victory at the Yas Marina Circuit for the first time since 2013, Bottas admits that he was surprised with the advantage Red Bull held over Mercedes last weekend.
“[I] tried everything I could and I noticed pretty early on in the first stint that Max and Red Bull had more pace,” Bottas said.
“The first stint was quite understeer-y for me. It was a short stint but I felt that was a bit of a limitation.
“Then we made a bit of an adjustment on the front flap for the second stint and that felt actually, balance-wise, not bad, just not quick enough.
“So, for sure, it was surprising. We thought that the race pace would be pretty much identical to the Red Bull but it wasn’t the case.”