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Valtteri Bottas

Bottas gives stark assessment after Alfa Romeo slump

The Finn has just five points from the first 12 races of the 2023 season.

Bottas Hungary
To news overview © XPBimages

Valtteri Bottas feels Alfa Romeo has been simply "out-developed" by rivals with the C43 simply being flawed at "birth".

After 12 races in 2023, Alfa Romeo has just nine points and is languishing ninth in the Constructors' Championship as the team prepare to return to being known as Sauber for 2024 and 2025 ahead of Audi's arrival.

This is in stark contrast to its form in the first-half of 2022 where the Hinwil-based outfit impressed on its way to sixth in the final standings.

Bottas has had the worst first-half of the season in his career since going point-less in his rookie campaign of 2013, but feels the team is putting processes in place to rectify the alarming slump.

Trouble from the start

"We've been out-developed, and also with the way the car was born, the pure performance level was not where we wanted," Bottas told media including RacingNews365.

"Ever since [the start of the season], everyone has been improving, and some teams have made big steps like McLaren recently.

"Nowadays, the cars are heavily impacted by the aerodynamics, that is just how it goes.

"It's just the level where we started isn't where we wanted.

			© XPBimages
	© XPBimages

Long-term hopes

The slump in form comes after Alfa Romeo was one of the fastest teams in the early stages of 2022 after the ground effect regulations were introduced.

This was largely due to the car being on the weight limit as others exceeded the minimum allowed, with the team scoring 51 points in the first eight races.

However, since the 2022 British Grand Prix, Alfa has scored just 13 points, with Bottas's eighth place in the '23 opener in Bahrain being the best result.

This is unlikely to change in the short-term as technical reshuffles take place at Hinwil, as Bottas explained.

"For the first five or six races of last year, for sure, it maybe looked a bit better than it was because of some teams having issues," the 10-time Grand Prix winner added.

"We were one of the only teams on the weight limit, and then from the mid-season on until the end of the season, it was probably more representative of where we were.

"But even from that, we were expecting to make a step, but there is no one particular [weakness] of the car, of the team or the factory. It is just small things here and there combined.

"We just need to keep working hard, find a solution and look into the future and make a clear plan.

"Obviously there has been quite a few changes in the team management and big roles with more people coming later this year.

"There is still a bit of restructuring going on, but obviously we won't see the results this year, that is going to be in the future."

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