Frédéric Vasseur says the Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN team can be happy with their finishing positions in Sunday’s Azerbaijan Grand Prix, with Kimi Räikkönen scoring his first top ten finish of the season.
Räikkönen edged out team-mate Antonio Giovinazzi for the final point on offer, but the result meant the team scored points for a second consecutive race. Giovinazzi had broken their points duck last time out in Monaco, again with a tenth-place finish.
Vasseur, the Team Principal at Alfa Romeo and the CEO of Sauber Motorsport AG, says finishing tenth and eleventh was a good result for the team, particularly when they take into account where they started on the grid. Räikkönen began fourteenth, while Giovinazzi was at the rear of the field after crashing during Qualifying.
“We can be happy with bringing a point home, especially as we displayed good pace with both cars from start to finish,” said Vasseur.
“We were starting in far from ideal positions, but everyone in the team did a good job to allow us to fight for points until the final laps: to finish in the top ten for the second race running is a reward for clean driving, a strategy that allowed both drivers to be in a fighting position and some good stops.
“At the restart, we had to play our cards smartly as everyone was going to take some risks, but in the end we managed to come away with a good point.”
Vasseur insists Alfa Romeo still have plenty of work to do to be regular contenders for the top ten, but two consecutive point’s finishes will give the team confidence that they are heading in the right direction.
“We have once again shown the progress we have made and how we’re in the position to be fighting for top tens regularly, but there’s still work to be done,” he said. “We are confident and the last few races have really encouraged us, so we can keep pushing towards our objective.”