Mercedes' new Formula One driver Valtteri Bottas revealed that he is no mood to play second fiddle to teammate Lewis Hamilton in the upcoming 2017 season. F1 champions Mercedes made the long-awaited announcement on Monday that the Finnish driver will replace recently retired F1 champion Nico Rosberg at their team on a one-year contract.
Notably, Bottas stepped up from being a test driver to a full-time racer for Williams in 2013 and has finished on the podium nine times in his four-year stint with the former team without being able to win a title.
However, Bottas believes that he can aim for nothing less after joining the team, that has been dominant in the recent past, winning the constructor's championship for three successive years. The 27-year-old believes that he has the experience to cope up with the pressure of being a Mercedes driver and that he will be able to fill the void left by Rosberg.
While Rosberg and Hamilton had a stony relationship for each other, the new Silver Arrows driver said he will be able to work well in tandem with the latter and that both of them will push each other "to the next level".
"If there is an opportunity to fight for the title I will go for it, it is my only dream in F1 so I am ready to work hard and do everything I can. But let us go race by race. Being in this kind of team that has won the title three years in a row, you can't target anything less than the championship," Bottas said, as quoted by the DailyMail.
"They are big boots to fill [Rosberg]. I have smaller feet! Last year Nico won the title but I am ready for it. I will do everything I can from the first test and race and I trust myself and my skills to know I can do it.
"I see no problem at all. I respect him [Lewis Hamilton] a lot as a driver and a person. I think we can be a good pair of team-mates, working well as a team and pushing each other to the next level. I am looking forward to getting to know him."