• Spanish GP

Williams happy with successful upgrades

ESPN Staff
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Williams have put Valtteri Bottas' strong performance at the Spanish Grand Prix down to the success of the new updates on the FW36.

Bottas qualified fourth and finished fifth in Spain, equalling his best result of the season, and looked as though he had the third fastest car behind the Mercedes and Red Bull. Williams brought a significant set of updates to the Circuit de Catalunya this weekend and head of performance engineering Rob Smedley believes they made a big difference.

"We were waiting to see how much the upgrades were going to work and they've ultimately been very successful," he said. "It's a downforce track, very, very difficult on tyres, and it's not only downforce in qualifying, downforce becomes even more important in the race to look after the tyres and reduce degradation. The car worked very well and was third quickest, so ultimately I'm very pleased with that."

But Bottas said there is still work to do.

"I think we need to be happy with 10 points again. It was good to see we were the third quickest team here and that was a result with my car, so that's very good. We need to analyse if there is something we could have done better, but Vettel was on the medium tyre and I was on the hard and he was on the fresher tyre. There was nothing that could be done about him getting through me, so I really feel particularly happy with fifth and we are going to have a look to see if there is anything better we could do in the future."

Bottas ran third at the start, but admitted the team did not want to go too aggressive with its strategy and was actually aiming for fourth before Sebastian Vettel came through on a three-stop strategy.

"We focused on trying to get fourth position rather than risk everything to try to get third. That was the decision we made today and that's why we continued a bit longer in the first stint and stayed basically in the plan that we made before the race. We did a plan and now we need to see if there is anything we could have done better."

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