Valtteri Bottas, Alfa Romeo, Bahrain International Circuit, 2022

Bottas “really starting to like the car” but has reliability concerns

2022 F1 season

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Valtteri Bottas is encouraged by the improvements Alfa Romeo have made with their car but is concerned about whether they can complete a race distance.

The team enjoyed a more productive second test in Bahrain after covering the fewest laps of anyone at Circuit de Catalunya two weeks earlier. But Bottas is concerned they may not have fully got on top of all their reliability problems.

“I’ll be more confident once we speak with the team next week and when I hear that all the issues we understand 100% and we make sure that they don’t happen again,” he said in response to a question from RaceFans. “Because at the moment now my biggest concern is doing a race distance.”

“We’ve had multiple different kind of issues during this test, but we’ve been able to fix them and we just hope there’s no new issues coming up.

“Otherwise, in terms of performance, my feeling for now is that the team has made a clear step from last year. And that’s nice to see. You know testing, we can’t say in detail, but it’s not far off where we should be.”

After ending the final day of testing with the fifth-fastest time, Bottas said he is feeling increasingly at home in his C42.

“When it works, it’s not bad,” he said. “I was really starting to like the car. Both high fuel and a little bit lower fuel it felt pretty decent. We got a clear direction on the set-up that we still need to go to extract more performance.”

“Still, it’s not easy in general to turn the car quickly and early enough in the corners. I think it’s also a characteristic of the new tyres, they are quite weak on the combined braking [and steering], the front tyres especially.

“It was a good day for learning and the main thing is we just need to fix all the issues we’ve been having now.”

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Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...
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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  • 4 comments on “Bottas “really starting to like the car” but has reliability concerns”

    1. With the new regs and different design concepts I am expecting plenty of reliability concerns this season.

      Look on the bright side Valttieri – at least you are now free to race your own race ;)

      1. I think we really underestimate the effect of psychology in sports. I think in any activity that has performance, it does have a huge effect. Whenever you doubt yourself, you start to overthink and then you arrive at the wrong answers trying to be too smart.

        1. He is no longer an underappreciated servant.

    2. I wonder how long it’ll take for his joy at being relieved of the burden of expectation to be replaced by a sinking feeling as he realises he’s now a perennial backmarker?

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