Bottas: Room for improvement at Sauber
By Mat Coch
Wednesday 28th June, 2023 - 1:04pm
Valtteri Bottas believes there is room for improvement at Sauber as the operation ramps up towards becoming Audi’s factory F1 team from 2026.
Audi announced it would take an increasing stake in the Swiss-based squad, which currently races under the Alfa Romeo brand.
That title will disappear next year in readiness for the change in branding.
There has been significant change behind the scenes, too, with Andreas Seidl being lured across from McLaren to become the business’ CEO.
More recently, the German has recruited former McLaren colleague James Key to head the technical department.
“James is obviously very, very welcome to the team,” said Bottas.
“He’s got lots of experience from different teams before being in different situations.
“I think he’s going to be a good addition for us, and looking forward to starting to work with him.”
Key’s appointment comes as Sauber is in the midst of a building phase, with Bottas suggesting there are plenty of areas of opportunity to the exploited.
“The basic things are there,” he said.
“There’s always room for improvements; you could always get the latest machinery for every single department.
“I think there’s still work going on seeing where to invest, when to invest, because there’s a clear long-term plan.
“In the end, it’s also about human power.
“We’re getting there, step by step, but it is a project.”
Bottas joined from Mercedes at the start of 2022 and is understood to have a contract in place through to the end of next season.
Beyond that, his future is uncertain in what will become one of six factory teams on the F1 grid for 2026.
Alfa Romeo Sauber sits seventh in the constructors’ championship after eight races and has enjoyed points-paying results in the past two grands prix.
Formula 1 heads to the Red Bull Ring this weekend for Round 9 of the championship, a race Bottas won twice for Mercedes.