Race - Austrian GP report: Williams Mercedes
Valtteri Bottas achieved his first ever Formula One podium with Felipe Massa finishing fourth after a competitive race in Austria.
Felipe led from Valtteri at the end of the first lap and maintained a gap to the chasing Mercedes until the first round of pitstops
Both Mercedes were able to get ahead of the Williams during the pitstops but the team did a great job with Valtteri recording the quickest stop of the race
The team scored a valuable 27 points moving Williams up to fifth in the Constructors’ Championship ahead of its home race at Silverstone.
Rob Smedley, Head of Performance Engineering
I believe we got everything out of today that we could have done. It was a difficult race in terms of managing brakes, systems on the car and tyres, and that dictated what we could do with strategy. The two car crews did a great job to manage tyres and get us to the end of the race and both drivers drove a sensible race. Considering where the team was 12 months ago, to where we are today, everyone should be very proud of this result and enjoy this moment. Securing 27 points is a great result today.
It’s difficult to explain how I feel right now. That was the best champagne I’ve ever tasted. All the hard work that the team puts in shows in moments like this. I had one pitstop that really put in me in the fight and that changed my race, so well done to the boys for that. I had put in a good lap before that and so I got in front on Felipe and from there I could manage my pace with the cars in front. Having both cars score good points is what we wanted and so third and fourth for the team is a great result. There are still two places to go up the podium, but for now we will enjoy this moment.
I am very happy for Valtteri, he did a great job. We had a good fight with the Mercedes but it was clear we were never going to win. I had to manage my tyres the whole race and also struggled with traffic. To stop first and come back out fourth is a bit disappointing but that’s racing. It was a positive weekend for the whole team and an emotional one as well. The main thing is that we got 27 points which means we move up in the Constructors’ Championship. We have progressed a lot but there still work to do to close the gap to Mercedes.