Sergey Sirotkin says his Williams Martini Racing team should be happy with their starting positions for the 2018 Pirelli United States Grand Prix, despite failing to place a car in Q2 for the eleventh time this season.
Engine penalties for both Brendon Hartley and Pierre Gasly have demoted the pair to the back of the field, lifting Sirotkin and his team-mate Lance Stroll up to fourteenth and fifteen respectively.
“We should be happy with what we have, especially with the amount of running we did earlier today,” Sirotkin said. “I think we optimised our performance quite well, I know we’re not through to Q2 and we have to aim for higher performance, but we squeezed the maximum from what we have available.
“I think we should be fair with ourselves and take it as it comes.”
The pressure has been building on Sirotkin in recent weeks with rumours about the uncertainty of his future in Formula 1 have started to surface.
Despite being signed on a ‘multi-year contract’ at the start of the season, both Esteban Ocon and current Williams’ reserve driver, Robert Kubica, have been tipped to replace the Russian.
“At every stage of your career, there is noise about certain events that may or may not happen,” he told Motorsport.com. “I’m not aware of these rumours, and I don’t even try to find out about them or poke my nose in.
“I know that I can’t do any more than I am doing already. What will happen will happen, so I will just keep trying to do my job in the best way.”