Following a brutal run of three triple-headers to start the 2020 Formula 1 season, the paddock ventured to Sochi last weekend for its first standalone event of the year.
The Russian Grand Prix has rarely been a memorable race through its seven-year history, and the 2020 running wasn’t much of an exception as a pre-race penalty overshadowed the race.
Valtteri Bottas breathed a little bit of life into his long-fading title hopes with a fuss-free victory as Lewis Hamilton was subject to a controversial penalty that was the main post-race talking point.
Here are 10 things we learned from the Russian Grand Prix.
1. Bottas really needed that victory
Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes-AMG F1, 1st position, with his trophy and Champagne
Photo by: Steve Etherington / Motorsport Images
His victory in Russia may only have cut Hamilton’s lead in the drivers’ championship to a still-daunting 44 points, but it was an important swing in momentum for Bottas.
The Finn delivered a repeat of his infamous “to whom it may concern” radio message on the cool-down lap, hitting back at criticism he had received in recent weeks.
“I just don’t get the people who have the need to criticise people,” Bottas said. “There’s been people telling me that I should ‘not bother’, I should ‘give up’, but how I am, I will never do that.