Bottas misfortune 'a bit of a joke'

As Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton were forced out of the Austrian Grand Prix, Toto Wolff concluded: "It doesn't get more cruel for us."

Valtteri Bottas at the Austrian Grand Prix on Sunday.   -  Getty Images

Valtteri Bottas says his season feels like "a bit of a joke" after he was forced out of contention for the second consecutive week at the Austrian Grand Prix.

The Mercedes man started from the front row in France but finished in seventh after a collision with Sebastian Vettel, and there was more misfortune at the Red Bull Ring.

READ: Max Verstappen wins Austrian GP

Bottas qualified fastest this weekend and still could not compete for a first win of 2018 as a hydraulic problem forced him out after 15 laps.

"At the moment it feels like a bit of a joke, all the luck I'm having this year," he said. "But what can I say? There's nothing I could have done for that.

"It's the first kind of hydraulic failure this year for us and, of course, we need to investigate it [so as] not to have it again. But it's pretty, pretty unlucky."

 

Mercedes had triumphed in the prior five races in Austria since its return to the calendar, but Bottas' retirement was just the start of its problems on Sunday.

Lewis Hamilton lost the lead as the team opted against pitting under the Virtual Safety Car, before he was also forced out of the race due to a loss of power.

Team manager Toto Wolff reflected on a dismal afternoon: "It's a tremendously painful day for us, for me, personally, the most painful in six years.

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"We were one and two on the grid, Lewis had a fantastic first lap. And then DNFing twice - and obviously losing the race under the Virtual Safety Car (VSC) - it doesn't get more cruel for us."

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