Bottas open to Bathurst 1000 start

Valtteri Bottas drove the 2016 Bathurst 1000-winning VF Commodore at the Adelaide Motorsport Festival

Valtteri Bottas drove the 2016 Bathurst 1000-winning VF Commodore at the Adelaide Motorsport Festival

Valtteri Bottas has said he is open to the prospect of one day racing in the Repco Bathurst 1000.

Bottas drove a Great Race winner in recent days when he got behind the wheel of a Tekno Autosports VF Commodore at the Adelaide Motorsport Festival.

The City of Churches has become a home away from home for the Finn, who counts Australian cyclist Tiffany Cromwell as his partner, and he embraced his inner bogan by getting his hair cut into a mullet while Down Under during the last Formula 1 off-season.

Back in Adelaide between the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix and this weekend’s F1 event in Melbourne, he put on a lurid demonstration in the car which took victory in the 2016 Bathurst 1000.

In a video piece for Supercars’ official website with Craig Lowndes, who was also cutting laps of the Victoria Park Sprint circuit that weekend, Bottas was asked if he might be on the grid for the Bathurst 1000 one day, should he enjoy his experience of the Commodore.

“Never say never,” was the 33-year-old’s reply.

Speaking before the drive, he also said, “I’m actually excited about it because it’s been long on my list to try a V8 Supercar and now, finally, I get to try one.

“I don’t have that many expectations but I’m just going to try and get a good feel and, for sure, I will try and push it a bit.”

Valtteri Bottas Bathurst 1000

Jonathon Webb, who won the 2016 Bathurst 1000 winner, straps Bottas into the car

Bottas certainly did push the orange and black Commodore, seemingly spending almost as much time sideways as he was driving in a straight line, based on imagery released by Adelaide Motorsport Festival organisers.

The event featured an array of class Formula 1 cars, previous generations of Supercars, and some heritage machinery from a variety of categories, packed into the Victoria Park section of the Adelaide street circuit which started life as a venue for the Australian Grand Prix.

Bottas likened it to a particularly famous festival for historic race cars.

“I’ve done the Goodwood festival a couple of times, and it’s actually a quite similar vibe,” he remarked.

“It’s great to see so many people that with passion to motorsports and some great cars here – some really rare cars as well – and a good vibe.”

The Alfa Rome Sauber driver is not the first from the F1 field to express interest in racing at Mount Panorama, with Max Verstappen and Kevin Magnussen eyeing off a possible start one day in the Bathurst 12 Hour.

The Formula 1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix starts this Thursday with the Repco Supercars Championship field on track from 11:25 local time/AEDT, before Practice 1 for the headline act on Friday at 12:30.

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