Bottas puzzled by lack of tempo in Baku
Valtteri Bottas admits he merely didn’t have the tempo to be aggressive on the Azerbaijan Grand Prix and says he’s nonetheless confused by how the race weekend performed out for him.
Each Mercedes drivers struggled on Friday however Lewis Hamilton appeared to make progress with a lower-downforce rear wing on Saturday, whereas Bottas opted for a higher-downforce setup to attempt to get warmth into his tires to enhance grip. That method failed, and after being unlucky to not get his last lap of Q3 in, Bottas slipped backwards all through the race and failed to attain for the second consecutive race.
“Primarily the principle problem was lack of tempo — simply not being fast sufficient,” Bottas stated. “Fairly early on within the race I may see that I simply couldn’t fairly match the automobiles forward — particularly when the Aston Martin (of Sebastian Vettel) was forward of me, I simply couldn’t sustain. Nonetheless, I’m confused and it’s actually bizarre.
“I believe (the wing) is one thing we have to assessment however we all know it’s not going to be a lot — it’s going to be, most, one tenth, so I don’t suppose that’s the important thing factor, as a result of we began the weekend with the identical wing and I’ve been behind Lewis on a regular basis by fairly an enormous margin.”
Whereas Bottas has endured robust weekends up to now, he says Baku is exclusive within the sense that he was unable to point out any potential for higher efficiency at any stage.
“I can’t keep in mind having this type of weekend earlier than. Sure, there have been just a few weekends after I’ve had dangerous periods however all the time, in some unspecified time in the future, I had the tempo. However this weekend it’s been on a regular basis like this, and through the entire weekend I nonetheless haven’t understood what’s improper.
“I do know myself the place’s the restrict and I can’t go sooner than this, and then you definitely’re nonetheless six, seven, eight tenths behind. It’s not regular, so it’s one thing we have to perceive earlier than going to France.
“It was much more of a battle than I assumed. I assumed it ought to be higher than Monaco, however clearly it was far-off from that. France is, in fact, very completely different — there’s lengthy corners, high-speed corners — and I believe one problem we struggled (in Baku) was tire warm-up, particularly on the entrance axle, in order that ought to be a bit simpler within the subsequent race at the very least, after which we’ll see.
“We should study from this weekend, but in addition it’s one to neglect.”