Valtteri Bottas: “We are moving in the right direction”


Valtteri Bottas finished the opening day of practice in Baku in second Credit: Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team

Valtteri Bottas had a tricky opening day of practice for the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, with him finishing as low as sixth in Free Practice 1.

The Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team driver seemed to struggle at the Baku Street Circuit in the first practice, he finished the session with a time of 1:45.737s to finish three-tenths behind team-mate Lewis Hamilton. The team had problems in bringing Bottas out on track without traffic in his way.

They were struggling with the set-up of the car, but made changes ahead of Free Practice 2 to create a more comfortable car. Bottas was able to bring the W08 home in second, behind Max Verstappen by only one-tenth. A massive improvement from his morning performance, with him much more happier in the second session.

For the Finn he believes if the Brackley-based outfit finds the correct gains, they will be right up there fighting for pole position.

“Practice one was quite tricky,” said Bottas. “We were struggling with the setup of the car and it wasn’t so well balanced.

“Today, we needed multiple laps in a row to generate the temperatures we want for a good balance. FP1 wasn’t a happy session, but we made some changes ahead of FP2 and the car definitely felt more comfortable.

“We are moving in the right direction and hopefully we’ll make another step this evening. We’ll work hard and if we can find those gains we’ll be right up there fighting for pole position.”