(© Ben Johnston 2015)
The Williams Martini Racing Team head to the Chinese Grand Prix hoping to jump ahead of Scuderia Ferrari and close the gap to the Mercedes AMG PETRONAS F1 Team. Last time out at the Malaysian Grand Prix Valtteri Bottas finished the race in fifth place while Felipe Massa ended the race in 6th place.
The Grove based outfit find themselves in third place in the championship on 30 points. In China last season,
Valtteri Bottas finished the race in seventh place while Felipe Massa ended the race one lap down in 15th place, so they will be hoping for much better improvement this weekend as the team are on the back foot a little bit as Valtteri Bottas was forced to sit out the season opening Australian Grand Prix.
Speaking ahead of this weekend’s race Rob Smedley stated:
‘On the back of a very hot race in Malaysia, we head to China where we are expecting considerably different conditions. It is often a struggle to get the temperature in to the tyres for qualifying, and you then have to manage front left tyre degradation in the race. That struggle will be even tougher this year with the improved rear Pirelli construction. It’s a challenging circuit, with a tough left hander before one of the longest straights on the calendar. The turn 1, 2, 3 complex is also very interesting and offers a good technical challenge. There are two different techniques here for a quick qualifying lap and a quick race lap, so we will work through these early in the weekend to be prepared. We have a few upgrades coming to the FW37 that we are expecting to deliver an increase in performance. There is always a high probability of rain, so we will also need to be prepared for this possible curveball.’
Felipe Massa commented on this weekend’s race by saying:
‘China is a similar track to Barcelona where we have conducted most of our pre-season testing, so we have a lot of data that can assist us in setting up the car. The track is harsh on the front tyres, often resulting in graining. It’s a good circuit, and you will always see overtaking there due to the long straight, which has the added DRS effect as well.’
Valtteri Bottas commented on the race by saying:
‘China is a good fun circuit to drive. The long and high speed corners give it a good character, plus it has a very long back straight which aids overtaking and makes the races more interesting. There is a lot of support for the Finns in China which is great to see and they are passionate about Formula One too.’
© Ben Johnston 2015