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Singapore GP: Race notes - Williams

NEWS STORY
18/09/2016

Felipe Massa finished 12th in the Singapore Grand Prix while Valtteri Bottas was forced to retire. Valtteri was hit by a McLaren at the start which gave him a puncture and forced him to pit on lap two and rejoin at the back of the field. Felipe started 11th and gained two positions at the start before the safety car was deployed. Valtteri was hampered by damage from the first lap and was eventually forced to retire on lap 35 with mechanical issues. Felipe ran as high as seventh but lost track position as the pitstops unfolded and was 12th for the final stint of the race. Both drivers retain their position in the Drivers' Championship with Valtteri seventh and Felipe ninth. The team is now fifth in the Constructors' Championship with 111 points, one point behind Force India.

Rob Smedley, Head of Performance Engineering: It was a difficult race, starting from 10th and 11th. Valtteri's race was almost done on that first lap when he got a puncture and dropped to the back. We suspected he had mechanical damage after his last pitstop, so the best thing to do was retire the car. For Felipe, we chose to go on a three-stop strategy to give us a bigger tyre delta at the end, but throughout the pitstops and through the traffic we just seemed to be on the back foot. Coming out behind Gutierrez after that final stop cost us because we might have been able to get onto the back of that Perez train at the end, on a better tyre, but that's racing. For a circuit like this, and in terms of where we are in the championship, the damage has been limited. The teams around us didn't get the points they could have done so we've been quite lucky.

Felipe Massa: It was definitely a tough race. I'm not happy with everything that happened. The race was going well in the beginning, but with the strategy and being stuck in traffic things changed a little bit. Anyway, that's the way it was. We now need to concentrate on the next race and try to score more points with both cars because today it wasn't good.

Valtteri Bottas: It was really bad today. It all went wrong before Turn 1. Someone touched my rear and I got a puncture, so we came into the pits. We went back out again but we saw that there was some damage on the car, so the pace was really poor. The car was sliding a lot and we didn't really have the speed. We tried to do everything that we could but then had a mechanical problem so we had to retire.

Check out our Sunday gallery from Singapore, here.

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