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Bottas was close to "big trouble" in Spain - Mercedes

17 May, 2018, 01:24 | Author: Sylvester Abbott
  • Sebastian Vettel: Tuesday testing has given final verdict on Mercedes tyre controversy

After securing second place behind teammate Lewis Hamilton at Sunday's Spanish Grand Prix, Valtteri Bottas clocked the fastest time of the two-day test on Wednesday. After all, Pirelli, for the Spanish GP, had altered the tread depth of the tyres due in part to Mercedes issues of blistering in pre-season testing around the circuit de Catalunya.

Valtteri Bottas posted the quickest time and finished less than 0.1s clear of Antonio Giovinazzi's Ferrari on the second day of in-season testing in Barcelona.

Hamilton is now standing at the top spot in the drivers' championship, maintaining a lead of just four points over Vettel. There's been no weekends that I've been really way off the pace, like there was a few a year ago.

Bottas, whose future beyond 2018 remains uncertain, told reporters after Sunday's race: "I think this year I've been meeting more or less my targets with the performance for the beginning of the year". "It's a good feeling".

"But the will to want to win this championship is greater than it's ever been". "I am happy to go back to "normal" tires in Monaco as we seemed to struggle a little bit more than the others". "It's hard to beat all of these records that he has".

The F1 bandwagon will roll into Monte Carlo for the Monaco Grand Prix on 27 May.

"Right now I've just got to keep my head down and keep doing what we've been doing".

"I was not translated correctly", Wolff said referring to him dismissing Ricciardo's chances of driving for Mercedes, as quoted on Planet F1.

Bottas has had some criticism too, with Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo - among those most likely to replace him - stating after Bahrain that he would have tried to pass Ferrari's race victor Sebastian Vettel rather than settling for second.

Local favourites Carlos Sainz and Fernando Alonso were seventh and eighth while Charles LeClerc and Sergio Perez rounded out the top 10. Had he not drawn a blank in Baku, Bottas would be a lot closer to Hamilton than the current 37 points.

Hamilton pulled away early and was able to comfortably control the pace of the race through to the end, finishing more than 20 seconds ahead of his teammate. He lost time in the pits and came back onto the track behind Verstappen, and was unable to make up the difference despite the newer tyres.

Pirelli's tyre testing also gives highly-rated Mercedes junior George Russell a run out on the track for Force India.

"I think in general it's a bit more downforce, it's good for me having the confidence to push at Turns 1, 2 and 3 and all the high-speed corners".

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