• Austrian GP - Qualifying

Bottas wary of aggressive approach from front row

ESPN Staff
June 21, 2014 « Hamilton spin costs Rosberg shot at pole | Ferrari flattered by fourth - Alonso »
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Valtteri Bottas believes he may need to err on the side of caution in the opening laps of the Austrian Grand Prix after qualifying behind team-mate Felipe Massa on the front row.

Bottas held provisional pole in the dying seconds of the session, only for Massa to cross the line less than a tenth faster to take pole after the flag had dropped. Bottas is wary of Mercedes' pace behind but also feels he needs to keep the bigger picture of Williams' overall result in mind early on.

"I think you always try to do the best you can [at the start], it really depends on how good a start you get and depends on the situation of what sort of start other cars around you had," Bottas said. "I think both of us, me and Felipe, we need to try to do the best we can to be as forward as possible after the first corner and the first lap. We know that Mercedes race pace is going to be really, really strong so it's not going to be an easy day tomorrow, but we will do our best.

"The race is tomorrow and we need to focus on that. It's going to be a different story, it's not going to be easy to keep the Mercedes cars behind for sure, and even some other cars like Ferrari and Red Bull are going to be strong. Not a bad day today but we need to stay focused."

Bottas believes Williams' front-row lock out shows how far the team has come since 2013, with special mention going to Chief Technical Officer, who joined mid-way through last season.

"I think we can see it in the performance. The results have shown he has been one of the key persons for Williams to come back into the positions we want to be in the races. As soon as he arrived many things started to change and are still changing. Every week as a team we are improving and getting stronger and stronger. That is thanks to Pat but also many other people in the team."

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