Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake’s Valtteri Bottas was satisfied with his Monaco Grand Prix performance, gaining four positions from fifteenth to eleventh– narrowly missing out on a points result at a circuit where it is traditionally difficult to make up places.
“We had a solid race and probably got as much as we could out of the day. When you make up four places in Monaco, it’s not a bad result and it’s only a pity we couldn’t get any points from our efforts.
Bottas said that the team’s decision to pull the trigger on intermediate tyres soon after the rain began was the right one, with him being one of the very first to take to the pits before the conditions became treacherous.
“The rain helped us a bit by mixing up the race, but we had to take some important decisions and we made all the right calls. It was not easy out there, even on inters, as the track was very wet in places and drier in others, but we chose to play this card before everyone else and we gained ground as a result.”
The update the team brought to the C43 in Monaco was a step forward according to Bottas, and he looks forward to seeing the kind of pace they’ll have at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya next time out.
“The car felt better with the upgrades we brought in, and we will hopefully get more performance out of it in Barcelona, a faster track where our package should work a little better. I’m looking forward to it.”
“We can be pleased with the progress we were able to make” – Zhou Guanyu
Team-mate Zhou Guanyu opted for an “aggressive” tyre strategy that set him up well to recover six positions from his starting slot of nineteenth on race day. Zhou was content with his thirteenth place result overall, having started far back and contended with a wet and slippery Monaco.
“We had a good race in very difficult conditions and, considering where we started, we can be pleased with the progress we were able to make. We made the call to pit on lap one, an aggressive choice that would have meant finishing the race on just one set of hard tyres.
“The pace we had on those was quite good and I made up a few places, holding off cars on fresher tyres before the rain started.”
Zhou said that the rain brought even more of a challenge to the Monaco streets, with drivers struggling to come to grips with the intermediates.
“The rain reset everything, we had to do another stop and deal with really difficult conditions: the track was really tricky, every corner could catch you out and I had to be very careful.”
Ultimately, Zhou was pleased with the performance of C43 on Sunday and hopes that they will be able to replicate this at coming rounds.
“In the end, we made up six places and it was quite good fun. Most importantly, our race pace was good and a good indication going forward to different tracks and other conditions.”