Frédéric Vasseur was delighted to see Valtteri Bottas score eight more points for Alfa Romeo F1 Team ORLEN in Sunday’s Spanish Grand Prix, a race where they did not think they would be that competitive ahead of the weekend.
Bottas ran as high as a fourth during the race at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, but a two-stop strategy gamble did not pay off as he was powerless to defend from the recovering Carlos Sainz Jr. and Lewis Hamilton, who both made three pit stops, in the closing laps to drop to sixth.
However, Vasseur, the Team Principal at Alfa Romeo, was full of praise for Bottas for bringing home another good finish – his fifth top ten result in the opening six races – and score another good haul of points for the team.
“We experienced another race in which we showed just how quick we can be, and to bring home eight more points, finishing just behind the front runners, is a positive result,” said Vasseur.
“We can be pleased about our performance, even more so given that we were not expecting Barcelona to suit us too well, so we can be confident we can be competitive on every race weekend.
“Valtteri did an excellent race, without putting a wheel wrong and managing his car well. In the end, he was powerless to stop Sainz and Hamilton, on fresher tyres, passing him, but we will take sixth.”
Vasseur admitted however that the retirement that befell Zhou Guanyu meant the Spanish weekend was not a complete success, and it is important for the team to address the issues and give the Chinese driver a chance at scoring points in the upcoming events.
“Unfortunately, we cannot be happy about the technical issue that stopped Zhou,” said Vasseur. “He was doing really well, moving up the places and heading to the top ten, when the car let him down.
“We need to address these issues and fix them, as we have the potential to be scoring with both cars in every race.”