Valtteri Bottas: “It was a bit of a problematic qualifying session”

Valtteri Bottas - Credit: Steven Tee/Williams

A software issue for Valtteri Bottas cost him the chance of running his engine in qualifying mode at Spa-Francorchamps, but the Finn was pleased to qualify eighth on Saturday.

Bottas ended 0.868 seconds off the ultimate pace set by Nico Rosberg, but was just 0.205 seconds behind Sergio Perez in sixth, and without the software issue, the Williams Martini Racing driver felt a top six result could have been possible.

Despite the issues, Bottas feels the long run pace of his FW38 around the Belgian track should enable the team to have a strong race on Sunday.

“Obviously it was a bit of a problematic qualifying session for us,” said Bottas. “Considering the software issues we had, I think we performed like we should have.

“It’s a shame that we had the issues because it meant we couldn’t get a top six position. At the end of the day, the race is tomorrow and that’s what counts. The car felt better today than yesterday so we’ve already made progress.

“Our long runs in practice looked good in terms of the race pace, so I think we can have a strong race tomorrow, even though we didn’t get the perfect result out of today.”