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Bottas pleased with strong run to P11

Mar 24, 2013, 11:00 AM EDT

AUTO-PRIX-MAS-F1-PRACTICE Getty Images

Williams may be struggling greatly with their 2013 car, the FW35, but Valtteri Bottas is pleased with his 11th-placed finish in the Malaysian Grand Prix.

“I had a good start but then I drove off the dry line racing van der Garde and ran wide dropping to the back of the field. Once the track started to dry I was able to start overtaking a few cars and I had a good, clean race.”

Bottas managed to finish ahead of fellow rookies Esteban Gutierrez and Jules Bianchi, and he only finished a couple of seconds behind Jean-Eric Vergne who scored the final championship point on offer in Malaysia. The prospect of scoring points so early into his F1 career excited Bottas, who believes that he could have caught Vergne.

“The team did a great job with the strategy and with a few more laps I could have stated attacking for a championship point.

“We maximized what we had today but I trust in the team that we can now continue working together to improve.”

Pastor Maldonado retired for the third consecutive year in Malaysia due to a KERS failure, but the Venezuelan driver was also pleased with Williams’ strategy.

“The intermediate tires made the start of the race very difficult. We had a good strategy to pit earlier in the race and opt for the dry tires. The pace in the second stint was good, but unfortunately my race ended early after a KERS problem forced us to retire the car.

“We will now work hard to prepare as best we can for the next two flyaway races.”

Williams are one of just three teams yet to score any points in 2013, with Marussia and Caterham also failing to record a top ten finish so far this season.