Williams head of vehicle performance Rob Smedley has called on the team to investigate why Felipe Massa struggled with tyre degradation so much in the Spanish Grand Prix.

Massa had looked quick all weekend but a mistake in qualifying left him ninth on the grid. He made up one position at the start but then dropped back through the field on a three-stop strategy to finish outside of the points while team-mate Valtteri Bottas had an impressive drive to fifth. Smedley said he was pleased with the result for Bottas but wants the team to learn how and why Massa had such contrasting fortunes.

"The cup is half full; well it's more than half full it's three quarters full," Smedley said. "We came here really waiting to see how much the upgrades were going to work and be successful. They've been ultimately very successful; a downforce track that is very, very difficult on the tyres and it's not only downforce in qualifying, downforce becomes even more important in the race to look after tyres and reduce the degradation.

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"I think you saw that the car worked very well. It was the third quickest so ultimately we are very, very pleased with that. We dropped out of the points with Felipe and we just have to look in to that. I said to the guys that it's a priority now for the operations group - all the various analysis groups - to look in to what happened in his race and to ensure that we get to Monaco in the best shape."

Pushed on what the reason was for Massa's struggles, Smedley said he had no early indications as to the cause.

"Felipe has been incredibly quick over one lap all weekend, I think it's fair to say probably a little bit quicker than Valtteri. That gap reduced in qualifying and it would have been that maybe Felipe was 0.1s in front - something like that - a small gap, but then we suffered with degradation; more degradation than we did with Valtteri.

"I can't really give you more information than that because if I knew what the answer was we would have fixed it in the race and we didn't. So we need to go away now, that's why we've got more than 500 people at Williams.

"We need to go away and analyse and see exactly what happened, use all the skillsets that we have and understand from a fundamental point of view how one car was able to manage the tyres and go longer on them and - while we were doing a three-stop for tactical reasons as well, it wasn't just for tyre degradation - with Felipe obviously we used the tyres a little bit more and he ended up with a lack of grip and struggling with the tyres."