The title fight may be settled, but Lewis Hamilton won’t be handing out any free passes to Mercedes team mate Valtteri Bottas in the final two races of the season.
Hamilton wrapped up his fifth world championship in Mexico City, raking in nine race wins along the way while Bottas has yet to score a victory in 2018.
The faithful Finn has come close on occasion, but bad luck or team orders have kept him off the top step of the podium.
Asked ahead of this weekend’s Brazilian Grand Prix if he would be tempted to hand a win to his wingman in exchange for his services, Hamilton said he doubted Bottas would want to be gifted a victory.
“I don’t think he is going to want that, he is going to win one on his own, in his own way,” said the 33-year-old
“So I don’t think I’ll be doing him any favours in the sense of giving him a win, I don’t think he needs that — I think he thinks he can do it himself.
“All I can do is try and make sure I’m supportive throughout the weekend. I’m always really open with my set-up, so I’ll continue to do so.”
Bottas, a three-time Grand prix winner with Mercedes, agreed that he would only want to beat anyone fair and square, on his own merit, and he believes Brazil may give him that opportunity.
“Yes, I definitely don’t want to win if it’s given to me,” he said. “I want to win by doing it by myself.
“Coming here knowing that there is a possibility to win a race is obviously a good feeling.
“You all know what my goal will be for this weekend, so it’s going to be up to me and I need to perform at my best level to fight for the win.”
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