Valtteri Bottas: “It’s the most special race of the year”

The Williams Martini Racing team are looking to secure another good haul of points this weekend around the streets of Monte Carlo, having seen Valtteri Bottas finish fourth in the past two races, while Felipe Massa was sixth last time out in Spain.

Bottas, who now resides in Monaco, believes this weekends Grand Prix is special, but is challenging, and is grateful to be coming into this weekend having raced at the circuit before, with the Finn believing experience is key to having a good weekend.

“As a Monaco resident I see the track being built and the grandstands going up in the weeks ahead of the race and the anticipation starts to build,” said Bottas. “Witnessing the whole build up and then the roads forming into iconic racing corners is a very strange but cool experience.

“It’s not the easiest race on the calendar but that challenge makes it a thrilling circuit to drive – for me it’s the most special race of the year.

“The first year I drove here I found it challenging so it’s nice to go into the race with some experience under my belt already.”

Despite admitting preferring the quicker circuits on the calendar, team-mate Massa admits he still finds the Monaco Grand Prix thrilling, with the Brazilian eager to have a strong qualifying session on Saturday so to have a good possibility of a good haul of points on Sunday.

“With the Monaco Grand Prix I get to see the whole process of how a Formula One race comes together way before the fans get there, which is something I would never normally witness,” said Massa. “It’s a one off race, especially as I can walk to the track in the morning from home.

“It’s a long, special but important race and I hope we can have a strong weekend. Although I prefer longer faster circuits like Spa and Monza, nothing can take away from the thrill of the streets of Monaco.

“Your first thought is to qualifying well, and from there to make sure that you finish the race. If you do that then you are in with a chance of getting some really good points.”