Alfa Romeo F1 Team KICK executed a solid recovery race at the 2023 Formula Belgian Grand Prix, with Valtteri Bottas and Zhou Guanyu making up places to finish just outside the points-scoring positions, in 12th and 13th, respectively. Both drivers had a busy afternoon as they were enmeshed in battles and end-to-end action, in which their C43s demonstrated good pace and were able to fight on an equal footing with their rivals.
With the summer break now looming, the team will regroup to analyse the weekend’s racing before recharging the batteries ahead of the final European back-to-back races, the Dutch and Italian Grands Prix.
Valtteri Bottas (car number 77):
We can say today has been a solid race. I was happy with our pace and with the strategy we chose. Overall, it has been pretty much a straightforward one, with nothing much happening after the start, when I went slightly off on the grass to avoid Yuki [Tsunoda], who was heading right. Of course, with the pace being very similar for so many cars in the field, it was going to be a bit difficult to make progress, especially taking into consideration how this track hasn’t suited our car best and our starting positions. There are still a few areas on which to improve, it hasn’t been the smoothest of weekends in terms of handling tricky weather conditions, but we did make some progress. Now, we are all going on a well-deserved summer break in order to reset and come prepared to tackle the second half of the season.
Zhou Guanyu (car number 24):
We had a good pace today, which allowed us to get in the mix and climb up a few positions. I reckon our car has been much more competitive in dry conditions, and we’ll be working on making it better in all circumstances ahead of the second part of the season. Considering our starting positions, it was going to be difficult to make up ground, but in general, I was especially satisfied with my last stint, when we were able to come up from the back of the pack up to 13th place. Now, I am very excited to go home for the summer break to switch off and recharge the batteries ahead of the second half of the season. We will be starting from Zandvoort, which is a high-downforce track I am looking forward to racing on again: hopefully, we will be able to regain our momentum there and get back into the fight for points.
Alessandro Alunni Bravi, Team Representative:
Both drivers and the team executed a solid race today: we were able to recover some positions on the track, finishing close to the top ten and, most importantly, matching the pace of our competitors. As a positive to take from this weekend, we reckon we have made a decent step forward in these weather conditions and on this type of track, comparing our weekend performance to previous ones on similar layouts. Of course, we were aware that from our starting positions today, scoring points was going to be a tough job without anything happening on track; nevertheless, both drivers had good pace today, and in terms of top speed, have been able to both defend their positions and attack to move forward through the field. Now, one final effort awaits us before a well-deserved break: we will analyse this first half of our season, aiming to make a significant step forward in terms of performance. We will be recharging our batteries over the next few weeks, getting ready for the second half of the season, which will for sure be tougher and tighter: we will come back to Zandvoort fully focused and motivated to get back to scoring points in each event.