Crash.Net F1 News
Bottas praying for rain
9 June 2013
Valtteri Bottas has admitted that he is hoping that the dank conditions that have blighted the Canadian Grand prix weekend will hang around for another 24 hours.
The Finn performed miracles to put his Williams FW35 onto the second row for the Montreal race, but conceded that, in the dry, the car probably would not have even made it through to the final phase of qualifying, such is its lack of pace.
As a result, the rookie is probably among the few – with the possible inclusion of McLaren – hoping that the weather remains inclement for a little longer, as he seeks both his first F1 points and the first for Williams in 2013.
“I think the fact is, in the dry, the car doesn't belong to P3 at the moment so, of course, some rain would help us like it did in qualifying,” he confirmed, “I think we found, for the intermediate tyres especially, a quite good way of how to really work the tyre, the right temperatures and everything.
“It's way more up in the grid than what we really could ever imagine. It's been so difficult, the first six races, for us and it will be a nice boost for the team [to start third].
“I don't think we expected to be on the first or second row. I think everyone in our team was hoping for rain because there's always a chance, if you get the timing right, get everything right, you can maybe finish a bit higher than where the car is sometimes. But the race is tomorrow [and], if it's dry, for sure, it's going to be difficult.”
Although the results have not come his, or Williams', way in 2013, Bottas has shown himself to be a capable pedaller, much as he did in the year he spent learning the F1 ropes with the Grove team in 2012. Eleventh place in Malaysia, just one spot outside the points, is his best return to date, but the Finn brought the car home in Monaco, despite never having raced there before the grand prix weekend, and has so far avoided the similar pitfalls presented by the close confines of the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.
“I think today was very tricky, and it was a lot about the tyre getting a good lap, just at the right time, when the track is in the best condition, having good track position, everything, so it's not as simple in this weather, so that's why there can even be ten places between team-mates,” he said, reflecting on the gap back to experienced Williams colleague Pastor Maldonado.
“However, I think you can never be totally happy with the situation we are in. I still have zero points and there's still a lot to learn. When I look back, there's so many things you always could have done better. It's been okay but it could be always better.”