Bottas admits Alfa Romeo ‘were expecting to be better than this’ in 2023

2023 British Grand Prix

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Alfa Romeo’s Valtteri Bottas says the team are “not meeting targets” they set for the year after failing to score again at Silverstone.

Bottas had a difficult British Grand Prix weekend, breaking down in Q1 and then being excluded from the results of qualifying after the team failed to provide the required fuel sample from his car. From 20th and last on the grid he was able to recover to 12th.

He said it had been a “good race” but admitted “that’s where the pace was” at the moment. He doubted points would have been possible even even from a higher starting position.

“Definitely we made a step, but also other teams made steps,” said Bottas. “It’s the name of the game. So need to find a bit more.

“We don’t have anything coming in the next two events, but after the summer break. So the guys and girls really need to work really hard in the factory to bring some new bits.”

Alfa Romeo finished sixth in the constructors’ championship last year but appear unlikely to replicate that this season. Their second point-less weekend in a row saw Williams overtake them in the standings, leaving Alfa Romeo ninth.

“It seems like they’ve made a big step, and for us at the moment they are out of reach,” Bottas admitted.

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“I think at this point we are approaching halfway through the season and we’ve not been able to really move up the order,” he added. “We were expecting to be better than last year,” said Bottas, adding the team are “not meeting targets” that were set for the season.

They team have only scored nine points over the first 10 rounds of the season, compared to 51 over the same period last year.

Alfa Romeo’s head of trackside engineering Xevi Pujolar believes the team can move up the standings, as they are only two points away from seventh place.

“Our direct competitors brought upgrades, and comparing with AlphaTauri, Haas, we can be fighting with them, we are faster than them,” he said.

“I think the only difficulty is with Williams at the moment. That they were performing very strong, they were fighting with Ferrari and even Aston Martin. They seem to be quite strong the last couple of races, we have to see if that continues like this.

“But for us, we can see that all the gaps are quite small and from race to race there can be a bit of a fluctuation. So on our side we will just keep pushing and optimising our package and on the driving and everything race to race and it’s only two points to them.

“So we’re confident still from now until [summer] shutdown, it’s possible to overtake Haas and Williams. That’s our aim.”

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2023 British Grand Prix

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Author information

Ida Wood
Often found in junior single-seater paddocks around Europe doing journalism and television commentary, or dabbling in teaching photography back in the UK. Currently based...
Claire Cottingham
Claire has worked in motorsport for much of her career, covering a broad mix of championships including Formula One, Formula E, the BTCC, British...

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3 comments on “Bottas admits Alfa Romeo ‘were expecting to be better than this’ in 2023”

  1. The team and Bottas both seem as if they’re just waiting around until Audi get there. IMO, this is a waste of time by the organization to be whipping itself into shape to make best use of the injection of capital and expertise that will come with Audi.

    As for Bottas, we know he was a great driver for many years before the soul crushing experience (he admitted he almost quit MB himself at one point) many drivers paired with guys like Lewis, Max and Alonso that don’t have off days have endured. It’s clear he came out of the gates inspired and with an underweight car, but since then it’s been extremely disappointing. No idea if it’s true, but it seems like he’s fine with just showing up each weekend and with whatever unfolds.

  2. Did they ran out of talent or did they got it wrong or did other teams just do better job

  3. I know a lot of people think F1 is boring currently but in some ways, I actually think it’s quite fascinating at the moment – at least in terms of development.

    It seems to me as though many of the cars have fundamental design flaws that are costing them a lot of lap time. Whereas previously, an update would bring you half a tenth, if you get the floor working properly now, you can gain a staggering amount of time.

    The last time we saw something like this was the double diffuser… As teams developed their own, they instantly gained huge chunks of lap time and we’re seeing that again with these regulations. Catching Red Bull will be tough because they got the design right last year and are into the optimising phase now whilst the rest are still trying to get their cars to work – that 2nd place spot is an update away from anyone else though!

    Alfa Romeo clearly haven’t got there yet but as Williams have shown, it’s entirely possible to move forward quickly.

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