Bruno Senna has played down suggestions he is under pressure to match the achievements of his teammate Pastor Maldonado.
While Maldonado confounded his critics by winning from pole in Barcelona, Brazilian Senna has failed to similarly shine in 2012, scoring half as many points so far at the wheel of the sister Williams. But Senna, 28, denied that he must win in order to save his race seat, amid speculation Williams is keen to promote its reserve driver Valtteri Bottas.
“I know that I don’t need to win this year,” Senna is quoted by Globo Esporte. “I have to have consistency, to score regularly, and have races that show a lot of potential.
“To win in Formula One, everything has to be right: the car has to be fast, you have to be in the right position, using the tyres correctly and the strategy working out for you. All those variables are difficult to put together, and everybody in the team knows that,” he insisted.
“They are giving me the chance to learn this year so that next year I can be expected to be in a position to win a race,” said Senna.
According to Globo, Senna pointed out that the fact he is sitting out most Friday morning sessions in deference to Bottas is affecting his ability to fully understand Pirelli’s tyres. He said the effect of that lack of running was most obvious in Barcelona, where Maldonado won.
“Pastor has been able to learn very well about the condition of his tyres. This all comes with experience and it’s not something you can skip over,” said Senna.
Meanwhile, when asked about a likely title winner in 2012, Senna said it has rarely been more difficult to predict the outcome of the world championship.
“In my opinion, the fastest car is the Lotus, but they’re not always getting it into the right window,” he said, referring to his former team that was in 2011 known as Renault.