Valtteri Bottas put in an excellent performance in qualifying for the Formula 1 Bahrain Grand Prix, finishing sixth just behind his former team-mate Lewis Hamilton. Indeed Bottas is targetting Mercedes in the race today and believes he can beat Hamilton.
Valtteri Bottas could not have wished for a better start to his first weekend with his new Alfa Romeo team, as he will start on the grid this Sunday right next to his former Mercedes team-mate, Britain’s Lewis Hamilton.
“In the first test we had some problems, but after that everything went well,” says Bottas.
Valtteri Bottas qualified sixth on the grid for the Bahrain Grand Prix on Saturday in his Ferrari engine-powered Alfa Romeo and is bullish about his prospects in the race.
“It’s nice to see things going like this. I think we can compete with any team, there is no reason to think otherwise. Except of course Red Bull and Ferrari who are in a different league.
“This gives me a lot of hope, because even if there are still mountains to climb, it’s not Everest anymore.”
“To be on the third row in our first qualifying together is a great achievement and we have to be satisfied, me and the team,” said Valtteri Bottas on Saturday evening in Bahrain.
“My session went very well and I improved a little bit with each run, which is what you intend to do in qualifying. It’s an important moment for us because it shows that we can be here. I’m proud of the work everyone did, here and at the factory: we knew we had a chance to be in Q3 but it was nice to do it when everyone came in with everything they had.”
When asked if he can beat former team mate Lewis Hamilton, the Finn was confident without being cocky saying:
“Now we focus on the race: our pace on the long stints looked even better than on the single lap, so we can be in the fight. The top four are probably out of reach for everyone, but it would be nice to have a battle with Mercedes.”