Apparently Valtteri Bottas, Williams F1's new race driver thinks he only got his race seat because of his talent.
To say the least, we think that's just a very naive comment. All right the guy is a star. He has been champion in nearly every single feeder series he has been in. But then again Williams used to also have Nico Hulkenberg who also had been champion of every single feeder series he participated in. And to cap it off, Hulkenberg was also a GP2 Champion, the last feeder series before Formula1, and is more prestigious than anything below it.
If Bottas is as good as he and Toto Wolff actually think he is, he should have proved himself in GP2, or Formula Renault 3.5. The real reason he was awarded the race drive is because Toto Wolff as a part owner of the Williams team had a say in such matters, and he saw Bottas as a strong talent. In short Valterri is favored by a financially influential backer.
Toto Wolff is no longer involved with the Williams F1 outfit, having moved to Mercedes AMG, but he still possesses the means to make it worthwhile for Williams to retain the rookie in the seat.
While we don't dismiss the fact that Valterri could become someone to keep an eye out for, his statement is simply insulting to the many F1 hopefuls who also have triumphed in lower categories, but just never quite had the required corporate backing, to break into the top flight.
Robert Wickens was the Formula Renault 3.5 (FR 3.5)champion in 2011, he now competes in DTM. Robin Frijns was the Formula Renault 3.5 champion in 2012, and he will be Sauber F1's reserve driver. Mind you those 2 drivers are in possession of an award that carries more distinction than anything Bottas has won. To put all this into perspective, Red Bull recruit drivers for their Scuderia Torro Rosso team from Formula Renault 3.5. None of the Red Bull drivers have been FR 3.5 champions, although Sebastien Vettel was leading the championship in 2007 before he was given the STR race seat, so he never finished the season.
There are talented drivers out there, not driving in Formula1. Talent is only one part of the equation, and is by no means the only requirement for a race seat in F1.