Valtteri Bottas has admitted that he is surprised to have qualified third for tomorrow’s Hungarian Grand Prix given the nature of the Hungaroring circuit.
The Finnish driver is currently enjoying a three-race podium streak, but he did not appear to stand much chance of extending it when the Williams cars struggled to even finish inside the top ten during practice.
However, in qualifying, Bottas appeared to find another gear and eventually finished third in Q3 despite the tight Hungaroring circuit not suiting the FW36 car.
“I think maybe it’s a little bit of a surprise,” he accepted. “We knew that Red Bull are going to be really quick here and also Ferrari and obviously Mercedes like always.
“The nature of the track in theory is not the best for us, but we’ve been able to work well as a team to bring some updates which really worked well.
“Obviously we’re still missing some grip compared to some other cars but today was, I think, a really good day from us. Third and sixth, we have a good chance also here to get some really good points.”
Bottas will start one place behind Sebastian Vettel on the grid and one place ahead of Daniel Ricciardo, and he is expecting to enjoy a race-long fight with the Red Bulls in Hungary tomorrow.
“Tomorrow it’s going to be a really close fight with Red Bull and us,” Bottas said. “So we need to see how the pace is.
“If it’s enough, keeping them behind us, at least one of them, that would be good.”
Vettel joked about the speed of Bottas’ car, saying: “In a Williams, I guess it’s fantastic down the straights!” when asked about the difficulty of overtaking at the Hungaroring.
You can watch the Hungarian Grand Prix live on CNBC and Live Extra from 7:30am ET tomorrow.