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Maldonado targets more consistency

ESPN Staff
February 19, 2013 « Live Barcelona testing | Maldonado 'a great asset' - Coughlan »
Pastor Maldonado and Valtteri Bottas unveiled the FW35 on Tuesday morning © Sutton Images

Pastor Maldonado is targeting a more consistent challenge at the front of the grid this season with Williams.

Having won last year's Spanish Grand Prix, Maldonado struggled to deliver strong results on a regular basis despite some impressive qualifying performances. Following the launch of the new FW35 in the pit lane at the Circuit de Catalunya, Maldonado said the key for the team to become title contenders was to maximise the car on a more consistent basis.

"Starting my third season with Williams is important for both myself and the team," Maldonado said. "We've been working hard to develop the car and improve our performance. Last year we won a race and were competitive, but this season we must be even more competitive which I believe is possible. Consistency will be our aim to close the gap to the teams in front.

"There are a number of changes this season; I have a new Race Engineer and a new team-mate in Valtteri [Bottas], but there is a nice atmosphere right now as we are all competitive and know each other well. Being part of the Williams family is very special as a driver and I want to thank Frank for not only giving me the opportunity to drive for him, but also to deliver a win. My goal is to help take the team back to the top."

Maldonado's new team-mate Bottas said he was excited about getting to test the new car ahead of his first season in Formula One.

"It feels great to now be promoted to race driver with Williams this season," Bottas said. "It's a big step and I'm really looking forward to it. I have been doing a lot of training, meeting with my engineers and working in the simulator in preparation; so I feel ready. We know we have improved our car from last season but I am looking forward to seeing how it compares on track. We have a busy test programme ahead but I'm really excited. The moment the start lights go out in Melbourne is a moment I have been building towards my whole career."