The Alfa Romeo team has encountered a challenging 2023 season thus far, having managed only nine points in the first 12 races. This sparing performance falls short of last season’s 51 points achieved over the same period. Valtteri Bottas‘ eighth place at the Bahrain season opener marks the season’s zenith up to this point.
Highlighting the reasons behind the team’s stunted performance, Bottas suggested that the team commenced the season from a disadvantaged vantage point as compared to last year. Despite efforts to close the gap through systematic improvements overtime, the strides taken by competing teams have outmatched their progress.
While results from the current car fall on the dissatisfactory end of the spectrum, Bottas emphasized the importance of utilizing these experiences as lessons for their 2024 strategy. He warned against succumbing to frustration, advising instead to keep a focus on actionable future prospects. “Everyone in the team understands that the starting point of the season was not as strong as last year and it’s been quite a challenge to progress from there,” Bottas candidly remarked.
Despite ongoing upgrades, other teams have been making similar enhancements too, contributing to the competitive landscape. Bottas acknowledged, “We’re not satisfied with the performance at the moment. It’s challenging to race at the back when you aspire to be at the front. We’ve been outdeveloped indeed, and the car’s inherent performance level wasn’t where we wanted at the beginning.”
Looking back to the team’s promising performance at the start of the previous season casts the current one in a grim light. Bottas noted the team’s average performance during the second half of last season offered a more accurate indication of the team’s capabilities. The C43’s sub-par performance is not attributed to a singular significant flaw, but rather a combination of minor deficiencies that have collectively impeded progress.
“There’s no specific weak link in the car, team, or factories,” Bottas remarked. “It’s the culmination of minor issues here and there. The only solution is to redouble our efforts in outworking the other teams.”
Bottas stressed the necessity of looking ahead and crafting a comprehensive plan. Indicating changes in management and personnel, and ongoing restructuring, he reminded that the outcomes of these changes wouldn’t manifest this year but would have impacts on their future performance. Thus, Alfa Romeo remains poised, ready for work geared towards improvement and success.