Frédéric Vasseur says finishing sixth in the 2022 Constructors’ Championship surpassed the pre-season expectations of the Alfa Romeo F1 Team ORLEN outfit, but it was a deserved result based on an impressive season for the Hinwil-based team.
Lewis Hamilton’s late retirement from the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix meant it was closer between Alfa Romeo and the Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant F1 Team than they were hoping for it to be – they both scored the same amount of points at the end of the season – but Vasseur’s team took sixth spot by the virtue of a fifth place finish for Valtteri Bottas in the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix back in April, a result that Aston Martin could not match.
Starting the final race of the season at the Yas Marina Circuit with both cars outside of the top ten, Vasseur admitted it was always going to be tough to break into the points on Sunday, and so it proved as they ended twelfth and fifteenth for Zhou Guanyu and Bottas respectively.
But Aston Martin’s failure to score more than five points ensured Alfa Romeo secured the important sixth spot, and Team Principal Vasseur says it meant a lot to everyone for them to do so.
“Tonight is the crowning of an incredible job by everyone in the team, both trackside and in Hinwil,” said Vasseur.
“Finishing in P6 in the championship surpasses our expectations and the targets we had set at the beginning of the season, so we can thoroughly say that this season was a success: I am proud of what we have achieved, but this is just another starting point on which we want to build.
“Tonight’s race was just about the championship result: we knew that, starting from far back, scoring points on our own would have been hard, but we could work as a team and make strategic decisions to make the fight for P6 lean in our direction.
“In the end, it turned out a bit more tense than we would have hoped after Hamilton’s retirement, and the last few laps were a nail-biting affair! But we brought it home, this is what matters, and you can see what it really means to all of us.”