Valtteri Bottas: Sauber 30-second pit stops “not really acceptable”

Jaden Diaz

Valtteri Bottas was the victim of another painfully slow pit stop at the Australian GP. After initially competing with the Haas pairing for points, the Finnish driver leaves Albert Park frustrated that a recurring issue compromised his result.

There were few F1 news headlines about Sauber after qualifying. Aside from Zhou’s front-wing damage in Q1, very little was noteworthy about the C44 duo on Saturday. However, Bottas made Q2 for the first time in 2024 and put himself in a reasonable chance of fighting for the top 10.

Indeed, the 10-time race winner was in the mix during the early stages. Early retirements from Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton gave the midfield teams an opportunity to claim points. Bottas was among those in contention, with the bottom-5 teams closely matched before the first Virtual Safety Car.

Unfortunately for the Swiss-based outfit, they failed to convert today’s chance into points. Among other things, their poor pit-stops were to blame – throwing away any hopes of finishing in the top 10.


Speaking in the media pen, Valtteri Bottas made no secret of his frustrations:

“It’s not great, obviously. We know we have work to do on those [pit-stops]. 

“It’s frustrating because I think we had good pace and a good start.

“We should have ideally scored points with the performance we had, but we obviously haven’t the issues yet. 

“That’s what we need to keep working on… In the position I was in, with DNFs happening, we definitely should have come out with points today.

“A 30-second pit stop is not really acceptable, but we’re working on it.”

Valtteri Bottas, Kick Sauber F1 Team C44 ; 2024 Australian Grand Prix, Formula One World Championship

These persistent issues will be especially frustrating for Bottas in the context of such a volatile F1 driver market.

Sauber is one of many teams with an unconfirmed driver line-up for 2025. Therefore, scoring points and maximising results are crucial for those looking to continue in Formula 1.

With drivers like Carlos Sainz and Nico Hulkenberg available, Bottas and teammate Zhou Guanyu will be eager to prove they deserve contract extensions.

However, if this pitstop weakness continues, their 2024 campaigns will become very complicated.