Bottas out to make the most of dream chance at Mercedes

Bottas out to make the most of dream chance at Mercedes

The Italian based team have been a dominant force in Formula One for a long time but they have struggled to get going in the last few seasons.

Lewis Hamilton will look to put his stamp on the new Formula One season at this week's Australian Grand Prix, as he seeks to regain the world title following the shock retirement of reigning champion Nico Rosberg.

The Finn has no doubts Mercedes will honour his equal status with Hamilton this season. "But their pace was obviously great in testing".

The new F1 seasons gets under way this weekend in Melbourne.

"It is very clear who is the favourite", responded Sebastian Vettel. "We'll do our best with what we have". They have some of the brightest drivers in F1 and with the genius that is Adrian Newey running things from the paddock, the sky is the limit for 2017.

"They were the quickest in testing, we couldn't match them", he said.

"We'll see how that pans out in Melbourne, because we still don't know about the fuel loads, weights or power settings of the other cars".

"Do more changes", the Englishman said.

During three seasons at McLaren with Button, relations became frosty before Hamilton quit to join Mercedes for the 2013 season.

Rosberg says that despite their intense rivalry, retirement presents the opportunity to fix his once close relationship with Hamilton, who begins his quest for a fourth world title at the season-opening Australian Grand Prix in Mebourne on Sunday.

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Ferrari, Jordan said, were "trying to pretend" they were better than they were.

"I didn't see many upgrades and I am excited to see what they bring here".

Stung by a series of backfiring overly-optimistic predictions in recent seasons, Ferrari have kept their public pronouncements to a minimum ahead of the new campaign.

If pre-season testing acts as an indicator - with Vettel second overall - then Ferrari could be finally in with a real chance of running Mercedes, at least close, for this year.

"So far it (Bottas and Hamilton's relationship) has been very good".

"I think that works well". As for Fernando Alonso, he's must be praying and hoping that Mercedes drop Bottas and hire him for 2018!

"That would be the flawless way to start the season and my career with Mercedes but I'm not thinking about it too much". So we really depend on our vehicle and then the driver is important as well. "The sport needs that and he deserves that".

With this in mind, Bottas won't rule out a potential challenge for victory from the off but says he will accept simply getting his 2017 F1 season off to a good start.

"Don't be surprised to see Hamilton just annihilate everybody".