Valtteri Bottas dedicates Australian GP win to Charlie Whiting
|By Scott Mitchell
||Sunday, March 17th 2019, 08:35 GMT
Formula 1 championship leader Valtteri Bottas has dedicated his Australian Grand Prix victory to long-serving FIA race director Charlie Whiting, who died ahead of the season-opening weekend.
Whiting was at the Melbourne circuit on Wednesday but passed away overnight after suffering a pulmonary embolism.
Bottas ended an answer in the post-race press conference to ensure he paid tribute to the popular and respected 66-year-old.
After responding to a question about the fastest lap bonus point, Bottas asked: "Was this the last question?"
When told it was, Bottas said: "I just want to say: thank you Charlie.
"This win is for Charlie and all his work for Formula 1.
"He's done massive amounts. What he's done, it means a lot to all us drivers."
In his role as race director and safety delegate, as well as his involvement in various commissions, Whiting was well established as the first point of contact for drivers for a wide range of issues.
His responsibilities included running the drivers' briefing at every grand prix.
F1 drivers and team personnel, plus FIA officials, gathered together in the build-up to the race to pay tribute to Whiting.
Black armbands and other tributes were on display throughout the race weekend.