Valtteri Bottas reckons Williams can catch Red Bull in the constructors' standings
Finn also hopes to maintain strong run of form this weekend
By Mike Wise at the Hungaroring
Last Updated: 25/07/14 6:58am
Valtteri Bottas reckons that Williams can overtake Red Bull and snatch second place in the constructors’ standings if they maintain their current form.
Consecutive podiums for Bottas, first in Austria and then his second-place finishes at Silverstone and Hockenheim, have already allowed Williams to move past Ferrari. Yet with team-mate Felipe Massa a first-lap retirement in both the British and German GPs, the Finn thinks they can also close down the defending World Champions, even though Red Bull are currently 67 points ahead.
“As a team, we definitely need to make sure we keep pulling a gap to the teams behind, now that we’re in a good position, from Ferrari in the constructors’ and we should not write-off trying to catch Red Bull also,” Bottas said on Thursday.
“It’s still a long season and if we score points with both cars, it could still at this point be possible.”
Although Bottas admitted that Mercedes’ dominance makes the final step up the podium difficult, he thinks he and Williams can keep up their run this weekend.
The team’s FW36 has proved quickest of all in a straight line this season but although both drivers have pinpointed a lack of rear downforce as the car’s Achilles’ heel, Bottas said that - unlike last year – the aerodynamic upgrades Williams are bringing have all worked.
“We’re always aiming for [victory],” he said. “This season it’s really, really difficult because of Mercedes being really strong: you know all the tracks but you never know what’s going to happen in the race.
“We know that for pure pace it’s difficult this season, but should still try and aim for that.”
The 24-year-old added: “We have some updates here, which should help on this track. It should be a reasonable amount of downforce; if they work well then we know the direction to push for.
“Last year, we kept bringing much more parts than this season. But the difference is that this season, all the parts we bring work.”
Having become F1’s ‘man of the moment’ as a result of his recent successes, meanwhile, Bottas expressed surprise at just how readily the results have started to flow.
“I have to say that, last year, if someone had told us we were going to be consistently on the podium, that would have been a bit difficult to believe,” he added.
“We knew that we were going in the right direction with all the changes happening and that we were going to improve. But maybe not this much.”
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