Valtteri Bottas believes he could have qualified higher than eighth for the Singapore Grand Prix but for a big mistake on his final lap.

After a difficult Friday, Williams was competitive in qualifying and Felipe Massa even sat in provisional pole position after the first runs in Q3. However, Bottas didn't improve on his second run after a mistake at the start of the lap and he feels he has left himself slightly out of position behind both Ferraris and his team-mate.

"I made a mistake in Q3 on the last run so I think there was maybe a bit more to come," Bottas said. "That was my feeling, but I had a big lock-up in to Turn 1 so never had a chance to improve my time. I lost the whole lap, I had to abort it because I went down to the canvas of the tyre. It was a big one.

Related Articles

"The track was improving and my lap time was improving all the time. I knew that the first run in Q3 was - from my side - not really a perfect lap. There were a couple of places ... it's a long lap so it's not easy to do it perfectly but I knew I can do better. So that will be a question mark, for sure. There was time to be gained with an optimal lap."

However, Bottas was keen to focus on the positive work Williams had done to make so much progress after really struggling on the supersoft tyre on Friday.

"We made big improvements from yesterday to today. Even from practice three through to qualifying we managed to improve everything on the car setup, but the main thing was the tyres. The prime tyre had been pretty good all weekend but with the option we had been working hard to try and get more lap time out of them.

"Finally we go to a good level and I have to say I was actually a little bit surprised how small the gap was to pole. So not bad for us in Singapore I think."