Valtteri Bottas: “It was an interesting day for me”

Credit: Glenn Dunbar/Williams

Valtteri Bottas has high expectations after the opening day of practice for the European Grand Prix.

The Williams Martini Racing finished Free Practice 1 in third with a time of 1:47.096 to finish behind the two Mercedes AMG PETRONAS of Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg. He improved on this time by 1.332 in Free Practice 2 but only managed to finish fourth behind the Sahara Force India of Sergio Perez.

This weekend marks the return of the European Grand Prix, with its new home of Azerbaijan, and Bottas feels the Grove-based outfit needs to keep working hard because the Baku City Circuit is a new track so they are ever learning.

“It was an interesting day for me,” said Bottas. “I really like the track.

“It’s very demanding, it has some high speed corners and some twisty, more technical areas, so it’s definitely one of the most challenging tracks on the calendar, but at the same time it’s a lot of fun.

“Even though I felt good today, we can still improve the car a lot and get more from the tyres. I have high expectations for the weekend, but we have to keep working because at a new track there’s always more to learn, which I enjoy.

“It’s interesting finding out all the secrets corner by corner. We need to work hard to keep finding more laptime from me and from the car because we have the opportunity for another good result this weekend.”