Formula 1 chief Ross Brawn has heaped praise on Valtteri Bottas in the wake of the Finn ending his year-long win drought.
Bottas controlled Sunday’s rain-hit race at Istanbul Park from pole position to pick up his first victory since last September’s grand prix at Sochi.
“There were several good drives out there, including Carlos Sainz’s brilliant recovery drive from the back to score points, but my Driver of the Day goes to Valtteri Bottas,” said Brawn in his post-race column.
“He did not put a foot wrong in very difficult conditions. Mercedes had a very good car, but he made the most of it – and never allowed a threat from behind.
“He’s the outgoing member of the team and in this scenario, it is easy to drop your chin, but he kept his up and I think he did a brilliant job.
“We all know Max [Verstappen] is supreme in those wet conditions, but he couldn’t touch Valtteri. He showed us that if Alfa can give him the car next year, he’ll respond and make the most of it.”
Bottas’ return to the top step also coincided with Red Bull’s Sergio Perez climbing onto the podium for the first time since June and Brawn lauded the Mexican’s display.
“It was a solid performance from Checo after some difficult races,” said Brawn.
“It was another race where it was easy to make mistakes, but he delivered the sort of speed and showing we’ve been expecting him to since he joined Red Bull for this year.
“He made a fair defence of his position against Lewis [Hamilton], and it was one of the most exciting parts of the race.
“He needs to do that every weekend. Maybe it will give him a boost and we can see that level of performance from him more consistently in the future.”