'Unlucky failure' no discouragement for Bottas
3 March 2014 – Valtteri Bottas believes Williams are as prepared as they can be for next month’s 2014 F1 season opener in Australia.
Bottas wound up second quickest on the final day of the third pre-season test and despite suffering an engine failure late on, did 108 laps of the Bahrain International Circuit in his Mercedes-powered FW36 - the most of any single runner.
“I think our final day of testing was very good, right up to a very unlucky failure just one run before the end. Overall, it was a still a good day as we had no other issues throughout and made a lot of progress with the car set-up. I think with this amount of testing we are as prepared for Melbourne as we can be,” he confirmed.
“The team has done a great job and thank you also to Mercedes-Benz. We still need to work very hard in these next two weeks but I overall I'm happy with how testing has gone for us. As I didn't have the chance to do a quick time on the supersoft tyre today, I am looking forward to picking up where we left off when we get to Melbourne.”
Rod Nelson, Williams’ Chief Test and Support Engineer, meanwhile was equally bullish and added that it was ‘another good day’.
“We ran a similar programme with Valtteri as we did with Felipe on Saturday, starting off with some chassis and aero tests in the morning morning,” Nelson explained. “We did some long runs after the lunch break to look at tyre degradation before moving on to a qualifying simulation. Towards the end of simulation, and before we were able to fit the Super Soft tyres, we had a high mileage failure in the Internal Combustion Engine. With the number of laps we have put on it, it wasn't a big surprise but it was still a shame that Valtteri couldn't get that final chance to push. However, with an overall team total of 936 laps under our belt, we are still pleased that that is the only time the FW36 has stopped on-track throughout testing.”
“[Overall] we end the pre-season running feeling very happy with the car, power unit, drivers and team. Everything is working together as it should and we are pleased with the direction that the team is going in,” he concluded.