Valtteri Bottas Proves F1 Drivers Are Real Athletes With Insane Cycling Time In U.S. Gravel Race

The Finn put in a serious shift...

Valtteri Bottas Proves F1 Drivers Are Real Athletes With Insane Cycling Time In U.S. Gravel Race

Image: Valtteri Bottas

We all know that Finnish driver Valtteri Bottas is one of the world’s fastest men behind the wheel of a Formula 1 car, but a recent cycling race in Kansas, U.S.A. has shown just how much of an insane athlete he really is…

For everyone who’s been paying attention to the running club trend that’s arguably taken over Australia – and let’s face it, the world – over the last year, the role of the networking app Strava simply cannot be understated. With more and more amateur athletes flexing their average running times from Centennial Park or Bondi Coastal Run, the public app has become as much a part of the experience as the running itself, with many hoping to get more Kudos from their doting friends and running peers.

I know, because I’m more than guilty of it myself. I’ve even started sharing screenshots to my Instagram stories to really drive it home that I’ve got up before 9am on a Saturday to go for a run whilst everyone else slept… but there’s one such athlete that couldn’t be further from amateur status – and his Strava has put everyone else’s to shame.

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Valtteri Bottas put in a serious shift in the UNBOUND Gravel securing P33 and 2nd in his age group. Image: Valtteri Bottas

Valtteri Bottas UNBOUND Gravel

With a well-deserved week off in between Formula 1 Grand Prix weekends, Stake F1 Team KICK Sauber driver Valtteri Bottas wasn’t taking any time to rest. Instead, the F1 favourite was in Emporia, Kansas for one of his other passions away from the asphalt, an endurance cycle race that certainly isn’t for the faint of hearts.

UNBOUND Gravel is widely considered to be the world’s premier Gravel event, hosting more than 1,400 riders on a gruelling course that stretches over 108 miles (173km).

Valtteri Bottas is looking to qualify for the UCI Gravel World Championships in Belgium later this year. Image: Valtteri Bottas

This year’s ultra-endurance cycling challenge was held on the gravel roads of Flint Hill, Kansas and with a moving time of 5:26:27, the 34-year-old put in a serious shift on the saddle of his Canyon, finishing in a respectable 33rd place and placing second in his age group of men aged 30 to 39.

Bottas’ time will likely mean he qualifies for the UCI Gravel World Championships which are set to take place in Belgium early October, so it’s a good job the part-time Formula 1 driver will enjoy another long break in between races.