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Alfa Romeo talk up Baku upset chances as Bottas sets target

Alfa Romeo have not scored a podium since 1984 but are confident that the Baku City Circuit will show the best that the C42 has to offer.

Alfa Romeo-Sauber are expecting their C42 car to suit Azerbaijan's Baku City Circuit as the team continues their fight for fourth in the Constructors Standings. Bottas and Zhou have scored 41 points so far this season, 18 down on the total McLaren duo Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris have amassed. The team have competition from below, however, with Alpine just one point behind in the standings. But they have built a healthy gap between themselves and backmarkers. It represents a big step forward for the team, who have finished no higher than eighth since returning to the sport in 2019.

Alfa targeting fine margins ahead of Baku

The team's performances on street circuits this season have been mixed but Vasseur believes that the long straights of Baku represent a chance to score big points. "I do expect our car to suit this track but, then again, our C42 has been performing well in all kinds of circuits so far," said Vasseur, looking ahead to the weekend. "The objectives remain similar to previous rounds – progress as much as possible with both cars in qualifying and aim to have both in the points come Sunday." The team boss also said: "We are heading to Baku with the aim to continue our team’s progression this season. We have done really well so far and we can be satisfied with the results we achieved, but we know we will need to keep working hard in every round to get the most out of each weekend. "We saw in Monaco how the margins are really small: you can go from P6 to P16 in a blink of an eye. This is why we need to be really sharp and make the most of every session, of every lap.

Bottas targets clean Friday to showcase C42's potential

It's been a long wait for Alfa Romeo in their quest for an F1 podium, stretching all the way back to 1984 when Ricardo Patrese finished third at the Italian Grand Prix. Valtteri Bottas, who has scored 40 of the team's 41 points this season, is the man best placed to fight for alongside the likes of Red Bull, Ferrari and Mercedes. “Baku is a place with both good and bad memories for me, so I definitely hope to add some more of the pleasant kind this weekend," the Finnish driver has said. "It’s crucial we can have a trouble-free weekend: we have been having some good results despite some Friday issues so far, and if we were to fix these, we could really see the full potential of our package. "We know we can fight towards the front when we do it and it has to be the aim here as well. This is a track that can produce some chaotic races so we will need to be ready to make the most of any opportunity. It could be a lot of fun on Sunday.”

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