Austria a chance for Alfa Romeo to bounce back

Large 2022 Bahrain Grand Prix Sunday Alfa Romeo Valtteri Bottas
Large 2022 Bahrain Grand Prix Sunday Alfa Romeo Valtteri Bottas

Alfa Romeo Team Principal Frédéric Vasseur says the Austrian Grand Prix, round 11 of the 2022 FIA Formula 1 World Championship, is an opportunity for the team to bounce back after a disappointing round at Silverstone.

The Swiss-based team suffered a double DNF, with Valtteri Bottas retiring with a gearbox issue after Zhou Guanyu’s horror crash at the start of the race.

“Austria is an opportunity to bounce back after Silverstone and get immediately back to the level we have shown so far this season,” said Vasseur, “We can build on the positives from last week – our pace, that was allowing us to fight well within the points.”

Zhou, who’s car rolled over and ended up wedged between the tyre barrier and catch fencing, said: “I am grateful for the safety improvements of recent years which allowed me to walk away with no injury, but now that is in the past and I’m only focussing on the weekend in Austria.”

Chinese driver Zhou has outqualified more experienced team mate Bottas at both of the last two races, in wet qualifying sessions, making Q3 on both occasions.

Bottas, who has two victories in Austria for Mercedes, said: “I always enjoy my time in Austria and I’m positive we will be able to fight for points and recover what we lost last weekend.”

Alfa Romeo have outperformed pre-season expectations and are chasing fourth in the constructors’ standings, the team currently sixth, 22-points behind McLaren who occupy fourth spot heading to Austria’s Red Bull Ring.

Finnish driver Bottas has led the team into the midfield fight, scoring 46-points so far, with Zhou Guanyu only five points, but also the bearer of most of the team’s unreliability, retiring from three races with technical faults.  

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