Formula 1

Valtteri Bottas confident in C43 after Bahrain: “We know we can put up a decent fight”

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Credit: Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake

Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake’s Valtteri Bottas is looking to ride the momentum of his solid result at the Bahrain Grand Prix to aim for even stronger results at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix and beyond. 

Bottas’ qualifying at Bahrain International Circuit resulted in his starting twelfth place, a position from which he was able to move up into the points, with several drivers ahead facing issues that were detrimental or ended their race altogether. 

The Finnish driver was pleased with the teamwork Alfa Romeo displayed this weekend, which resulted in his securing eighth place at the season opener and four points on the board. 

“We have been off to a great start in Bahrain, scoring a top-ten finish at the first race of the season. We were among the top five teams for the entirety of the race, and also gave proof of excellent teamwork throughout the weekend.”

Bottas said that upgrades are being prepared back at the factory currently, which he hopes will bring the team greater performance and the opportunity to earn more points in coming rounds.

“Still, as always, there is room for improvement. Coming into Jeddah, we must keep up the momentum and put the focus on continuing the good work done until now. Our colleagues back home in Hinwil are working hard on getting upgrades ready for the next few races, as we focus on progressing and on bringing home more good results for the team.”

Overall, Bottas feels encouraged by the team’s ability to compete with the rest of the grid, and knows that with great “attention to detail” they have the potential to have another strong weekend in Jeddah. 

“Our car is strong, and we know we can put up a decent fight against our competitors. Once again, attention to details will be essential to be on the front foot from the start of the weekend.”

“Starting the season with points was a good motivation for the team” – Zhou Guanyu

Though team-mate Zhou Guanyu came away from Bahrain without points to his name, crossing the finish line in sixteenth place, He was pleased to have earned the fastest lap and see Bottas in competitive form with a points finish. 

“Starting the season with points was a good motivation for the team, myself included – I was happy to give my contribution by scoring the fastest lap and taking a point off our rivals.”

The season-opener has motivated Zhou to aim for the top ten in Saudi Arabia, with the C43 showing signs of progress throughout the weekend. With this, he is confident that the team is moving “in the right direction” when it comes to development. 

“As we go to Saudi Arabia for the second round of the championship, I feel hungry and determined to open up my points tally for the season as well. 

“In Bahrain, our car felt better day after day, which showed we are heading in the right direction: we must keep finding the margins to keep our progression going and improve even more.”

Zhou expects a competitive, tightly packed field in Jeddah, however he feels that they are in the position to improve on last round’s result given that they maximise their performance and have a smooth weekend. 

“We can already predict the field is going to be tight once again, but if we manage to extract all possible performance from our car and team, I see no reason why we shouldn’t aim even higher this weekend.”

Credit: Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake
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