Williams’ record of scoring points with both its cars at every race so far in the 2016 Formula 1 season continued in Spain as Felipe Massa battled his way from 18th on the grid to join teammate Valtteri Bottas in the top 10.
Bottas had led Williams’ charge in qualifying by finishing seventh, and endured a somewhat lonely race en route to P5 after the two Mercedes drivers crashed out at the first corner.
“I think we got the maximum today and I’m pleased to get decent points,” Bottas said after the race.
“We know our car wasn’t quick enough this weekend, but we had a good result, so that’s positive. Of course we would like to battle for the podiums and wins, but it wasn’t possible this weekend.
“We need to keep pushing on the development and we need more pace on these type of tracks. We knew that if something happened we could gain a couple of places, otherwise it was always going to be tricky, but this is racing.
“A lot of things can happen and this time we took a small advantage from it.”
Massa’s race was more eventful. After taking an early pit stop on lap eight, the Brazilian made a three-stop strategy work – unlike Daniel Ricciardo or Sebastian Vettel – to make up 10 places and cross the line P8.
“It was definitely a very good race for us with some good points, finishing eighth positon from starting 18th,” Massa said.
“It was a difficult race, and not on our best track to finish in the points, so I’m happy. I know we’ve lost points compared to Red Bull, but that’s the way it is.
“Looking forward to Monaco, I hope we can show that we have a better car for that type of track, as we have struggled there over the last two years. Monaco is Monaco though and anything can happen.”
Massa took a moment to congratulate Max Verstappen, who became the youngest race winner in F1 history in his first race for Red Bull.
“I am really happy for Max,” Massa said.
“I know what it means to win for the first time, and he is only 18-years-old at a top team.”
With Nico Rosberg’s retirement, Massa and Bottas are now the only drivers to have scored points in every race so far this season.