Bottas hopes to prove Williams pace in Malaysia

Saturday 22nd March 2014, 21:54 by Ryan Wood 

Williams F1, LAT

Valtteri Bottas is hopeful of proving just what Williams can do as they head to Malaysia, after a mistake in Australia potentially cost him a podium finish.

The Finnish driver looked set to finish amongst the top three, but contact with the Albert Park wall and a subsequent puncture put an end to his early charge through the field.

Meanwhile team-mate Felipe Massa didn't even complete a single corner before he was rear-ended by Caterham's Kamui Kobayashi, therefore masking what the FW36 can really achieve.

Bottas is hoping that will become apparent in Malaysia where he says fighting amongst the top six cars is their minimum target.

"There are 18 races to prove what we can do," he said. "It could have been better in Australia. There was nothing Felipe could have done and I made a mistake - so there is definitely more to come. It is a different team now [compared to last year]. Now we have more points than last year and the car is so much quicker compared to the others.

"Malaysia will be a very different track. It's a bit more like a proper race track, rather than a special street circuit, which is bumpy and quite slippery surface. We do expect that we can really fight in the top six positions and I am very, very much looking forward to that."

The 24-year-old however acknowledges that the car isn't perfect and there is much work to be done to ensure they can remain competitive.

"In the braking and entry of corners we were quite strong. You can lean on it and trust it. On power we still have some weak points with the car, and traction is something we need to work on - especially in the wet. We were struggling a little bit to follow others in the high-speed corners - that is the weak point for us. In some exits of the corners, and some high-speed corners, we were losing a little bit. But I would say our top speeds are very strong, which helps with the overtaking."

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