Despite not showing their true potential in any of the free practice sessions, the Williams Martini Racing team once again proved to be a force to be reckoned with in qualifying at Spa-Francorchamps, with Valtteri Bottas third and Felipe Massa seventh.
Both drivers are looking for a strong race on Sunday, but both know they are embroiled in a close battle with a number of teams that seem to be on par with the team this weekend, including Force India, Lotus, Red Bull and Ferrari.
Bottas qualified inside the top three for the first time in 2015, and praised the team for making the right calls to enable him to get there, especially during the first part of qualifying when it was clear he was likely to struggle to make it through if they did not make a last second decision to switch from the Medium Pirelli tyre to the soft.
“I am very pleased with the result and it’s good to be back in the top three,” insisted Bottas. “The team did everything right, it was up to me to put it all together.
“Behind me it was very tight so to be on top of that pack is great. P3 is a good place to start tomorrow, the race pace looks on par with quite a few of the teams around us, so it will be a fight, but one I am really looking forward to.”
Team-mate Massa was disappointed a mistake in the final sector cost him valuable time that ultimately left him seventh quickest, although he will start sixth due to a grid penalty for Romain Grosjean.
“I lost a bit of time in the final sector and looking at the result it cost me a few positions, it was that close,” revealed Massa.
“It is frustrating but it is a long race and the circuit can hold so many surprises, one being the weather!
“We need to make sure we have a good start and gain as many positions as possible and then continue to build from there.”