Alfa Romeo are capable of fighting with “any team” on the grid aside from frontrunners Red Bull and Ferrari, says Valtteri Bottas.
Lining up with just the Ferraris, Red Bulls and Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes ahead of him, Bottas believes Alfa Romeo have the performance to keep the rest behind.
“I see no reason why we shouldn’t be able to fight with any team, I think,” Bottas said. “Except Red Bull, Ferrari – they seem a bit in their own league – but with the rest, for sure we can fight.”
It was a challenging pre-season for Bottas in his new surroundings as technical problems limited his running during the first test, before he lost the majority of track time in first practice with a misfire. Bottas admitted he was “surprised” to have qualified as high as he did.
“Obviously in testing, when the car worked, we could feel it was not bad,” explained Bottas. “But now after [first practice] issues we haven’t had issues and it’s been smooth. It is really, really nice to see so, in a way, yeah, for sure a bit of a surprise.”
After a difficult couple of seasons for the team where they finished eighth and ninth in the constructors’ championship, Bottas says he is encouraged to see how strong their new package seems to be.
“It was the first session that we would find out where we actually are and yes, it makes me happy,” he said.
“It gives me a lot of hope, instead of if I would have finished P18, it would be the slightly bigger mountain to climb. There’s still a mountain, but it’s not Mount Everest anymore.”
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23 comments on “Bottas believes Alfa Romeo can fight any team besides Ferrari and Red Bull”
19th March 2022, 21:01
How awesome is this?
19th March 2022, 22:09
Very. I hope it continues into the season.
19th March 2022, 23:11
I am gonna fist pump 500 times if bottas beats hamilton through turn 1!
19th March 2022, 23:12
I just practiced….12 seemed like a lot. I’ll also be holding a coffee….nevermind
20th March 2022, 1:25
20th March 2022, 2:59
If Valterri beats Ham into the first corner, I want a close up of Toto’s face
20th March 2022, 9:05
And also of his table!
20th March 2022, 10:58
20th March 2022, 8:57
Oh man, so so good! As a long suffering fan of Valtteri’s yesterday’s quali was another great “to whom it may concern” moment!
19th March 2022, 21:17
Really glad for Kevin and Bottas. Nice to see them smile with hope.
19th March 2022, 21:19
19th March 2022, 21:21
If he fights with Lewis the entire race, this will be fun to watch. They have always respected each other in their battles.
19th March 2022, 21:46
Really? Respect or just the second driver not allowed to take points away.
There were times Bottas was so deaply frustrated by the treatment he received. It took him some years to know his place.
It’s nice to see he can really fight with the gloves off. But I guess that’s no longer in his nature.
19th March 2022, 21:49
Really happy for Bottas, Magnussen and all the members of both teams at Alfa Romeo and Haas. It’s been a tough few years for all of them so I can imagine there’s an enormous amount of happiness back at those camps now. And they deserve it too.
19th March 2022, 22:05
Ah it’s like the Sauber of old, start strong but sadly cannot keep the development up and slowly slip back through the year.
20th March 2022, 3:03
I have a feeling this might be the case. Also a bit worried about their reliability after testing, but we will see! Surprised they managed top 10!
I have a feeling AM and McLaren will be improving over the next 4 weekends and there will be a fierce midfield scrap. Bring it on!
19th March 2022, 22:12
Mercedes will have this sorted in a couple of races and then it will be a whole other story. Remember all those other teams had more time in the wind tunnel than the Mercs, so they were bound to have some kind of advantage.
19th March 2022, 23:47
Maybe I’ll regret this comment in a few hours time when the race happens, but Bottas always talks a strong game and usually has the raw speed to qualify well. But he has been missing racecraft throughout his career, not making passes and not defending positions well enough. That, as much as anything is why he is no longer at Merc. It was never about his ability to qualify. So we’ll see how he does tomorrow defending against George, who I’m sure will want to impress on debut for Merc after all these years of coveting the seat.
20th March 2022, 2:16
the dream Finn team that could have been, in this car
20th March 2022, 2:59
So true… And sad… :(
20th March 2022, 9:26
True, they seem to be similar in some ways.
20th March 2022, 6:25
We’ll see if the same trend continues in the race.
20th March 2022, 11:42
Looks like Red Bull are more powerful but heavier by 10kgs than Ferrari and it’s hampered their acceleration.
If there was no minimum weight revisions, Valtteri might have a better chance to beat both Merc.
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