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Bottas: This morning felt better, but it will be tight


Valtteri Bottas said that the Sunday morning session “felt a lot better” as he continues to get to grips with the Mercedes W12 E Performance.

Mercedes made a far from ideal start to testing, with a gear box issue causing major delays on the first morning and Bottas completing just six laps as a result.

However, there have been incremental signs of improvement since, with the Finn topping the Saturday afternoon times with a fastest lap of 1.30.289.

Bottas was back in the car on Sunday morning, completing an impressive 86 laps, and he appeared encouraged by what he saw.

“We were able to make up for the lost time from the first day of testing,” he said after finishing his final run of pre-season testing. “In the short time, of course, everything was possible.

“Yesterday we achieved 95% of what we set out to do, today 100 percent. Now we just have to put the data in performance convert.”

He added: “This morning felt a lot better. We concentrated on long runs and worked a lot on the setup. We went in the right direction. The car is of course not yet at 100 percent, which would be unusual at this point.

“Where exactly we are is completely unknown. Of course we don’t know what the others are doing either. But my gut feeling tells me that it will be tight.”

Lewis Hamilton is back in the car for the final session of pre-season testing this afternoon.

(Additional Reporting: Agnes Carlier).