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Bottas: Imola F1 incident with Russell ‘done and dusted off’ after apology

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Bottas and Russell collided at high speed as they approached Turn 2 midway through the Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix as they contested for ninth place, causing a huge crash that forced the race to be marked with the red flag.

The two pilots were quick to blame each other for causing the shunt, but Williams pilot Russell finally apologized to Bottas after some fiery initial statements within hours of the crash.

Russell said he planned to call Bottas to clear the air of the incident, having originally hinted that the Mercedes driver might have defended himself differently against someone else. Russell is a member of Mercedes’ junior program and is widely tipped for a future seat with the team.

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Bottas revealed on Thursday that he had not spoken to Russell since meeting with the stewards at Imola – who took no action, deeming it to be a racing incident – and that ‘he was happy to pass it on to the past.

“I heard about his post and his apology, and read it,” Bottas said when asked by UKTN if he had been in contact with Russell.

“But yes, to be honest, we didn’t talk after the race, after the stewards.

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“I had a missed call on Monday morning, but I was still asleep.

Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

“We haven’t talked, but I’m sure it’s the same for George, it’s done and sprinkled.

“It’s history, and there was no decision from the stewards. George apologized, and [it’s] It is time to move on.”

Russell admitted Thursday that his actions in the wake of the crash were “very poor judgment,” prompting him to issue an apology on social media a day later.

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The Williams driver said he had spoken “extensively” with Toto Wolff since the crash after the Mercedes team boss looked down on his involvement in the crash.

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Bottas said on Thursday he spoke to Wolff after the crash but was eager to move on and focus on the races ahead.

“We had a conversation afterwards, just to go through the situation which is normal,” Bottas said.

“But other than that, we agreed [to] take the positives and learn from the negatives and move on. Kind to really forget.

“A positive point is that it was only the second race of the season, and there are 21 to go.”

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