Valtteri Bottas hopes to challenge for the Drivers' Championship next season after a solid debut campaign with Mercedes.

Championship the goal for Bottas

Championship the goal for Bottas

Bottas managed three victories in 2017 and came in third in the drivers' standings, with the Finn 58 points behind team-mate and champion Lewis Hamilton.

The 28-year-old is aware he needs to up his game in 2018 and he hopes he can mount a serious title challenge.

'There is one goal for the season: to fight for the championship. I know all the people now and how it all works,' he told reporters in his homeland.

'I did not realise a year ago how much there would be to learn. I have been in the factory a couple of times [this year] and worked on the simulator. The team has done well.

'It always depends on what the other teams have done as well, but we believe that our car is better than last year.'

Bottas is due to fall out of contract at the end of the season and Mercedes have made no secret of the fact they could opt for a change in driver line-up, with boss Toto Wolff admitting Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo could be a target depending on his situation.

The Silver Arrows driver remains relaxed over his future however, and feels the team will decide to retain him if he impresses.

He added: 'The best contract argument is to win as many races as possible.'