As Valtteri Bottas gets ready to put behind the Bahrain loss and focus on China, he says Mercedes is slowly becoming aware of the W09’s weakness.
The German cars found themselves at a disadvantage at the Sakhir track as the Ferraris kept the lead throughout the weekend. The Silver Arrows cars seem to be at a disadvantage when racing in the hot climate and abrasive tracks.
“I think this weekend has really opened up our eyes in terms of how much we still have to work with the car,” said Bottas.
“In certain conditions, it’s really fast but like yesterday [qualifying] we could spot some weaknesses and even today.
“It’s been an important weekend, we need to make sure we keep improving what are the negatives of the car, compared to Ferrari.”
The Bahrain race’s last few laps were intense as Bottas tried hard to close the gap and get within the Sebastian Vettel’s DRS range. But the Finn ran out of time and laps while running on his mediums against the worn out softs on Vettel’s Ferrari.
“When you’re closing up on the car ahead and you get to the braking zones, you lose quite a bit of front downforce because you’re running in turbulence, that mainly affects the front end, and it’s a bit easy to lock up the front wheels,” he said.
“It’s early days, but anyway it was a lot better than two weeks ago and today, the race pace we had, was actually slightly better than what we expected coming into the race, so that was positive.”