Valtteri Bottas says being able to “focus only on driving” has helped his Formula 1 form in recent weeks, having returned to the top step of the podium in Turkey.
Bottas, who has spent five seasons with Mercedes, will switch to Alfa Romeo from 2022, a move that was announced in the build-up to last month’s Italian Grand Prix.
Bottas surged from the back of the grid up to third at Monza and at Istanbul Park controlled the race from pole position to record his first win of the season.
“I’ve had the confidence always really, but it’s nice to have a win and the reminder that you can win races,” said Bottas.
“It’s been a while. To be honest, after Monza I’ve been feeling very relaxed in any case and been able to just focus only on driving and for sure that helps.”
Bottas stressed that “the team has been good” and “nothing has really changed” since it was confirmed that he will exit Mercedes at the end of 2021.
“Everything is normal and the team has a good spirit overall and we’re really motivated for the rest of the year and working hard as always,” he said.
“I only saw them from the podium and when I got out of the car it was good, obviously. Yeah, everyone seemed happy.”
Bottas won upon Formula 1’s last visit to the Circuit of the Americas in 2019 and is confident of maintaining his and Mercedes’ form when the championship returns to the USA next weekend.
“I don’t have a crystal ball but I think on paper I think it should be one of the good ones, hopefully,” he said.
“That’s what we hope – but we’ll work hard in the next two weeks to make sure we’re in a position to fight for the win again.”