Bottas steps up for Mercedes

12 November 2017 05:34:15 GMTPlus11

Valtteri Bottas is on pole position for the Brazilian Grand Prix with Lewis Hamilton at the back of the grid after crashing in qualifying. 

In the first race since Hamilton secured the world championship he crashed on his first lap of qualifying and is therefore consigned to the back.

Leading though is his Mercedes team-mate Bottas who is happy to step up after Hamilton's misfortune.

He said after securing pole: "It feels good. It was so close with Seb all through qualifying.

"It's a shame Lewis went out but I'm happy I could do a good job for the team.

"Avoiding mistakes will be crucial tomorrow as well as a good start. I'm really looking forward to it."

Bottas is followed on the grid by Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen with the Red Bull duo of Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo fourth and fifth respectively. However Ricciardo will start further down the grid due to an engine-related demotion.

Hamilton lost control of the car at Turn Six but was philosophical afterwards, saying: "I am going to take whatever bubble of negativity comes from that experience and try and grow from it.

"Very unusual of me, but it just shows we are all human and things happen. I will try to have as much fun as possible tomorrow. Years ago I came from quite far behind and had a great race."

Bottas is 2.37 to win Sunday's race with Vettel 2.10 and Hamilton priced at 15.00 to pull off victory from the back of the grid.

Hamilton is 1.002 to win the drivers' title once again in 2018 with Vettel available to be backed at 51.00.

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