Questions continue to be asked of Valtteri Bottas’ fitness to participate in the Australian Grand Prix following reports that he attended a hospital straight after qualifying complaining of back pain.
The Williams F1 team have confirmed that his participation will only be decided following medical checks prior to the race itself on Sunday.
The team’s performance chief Rob Smedley said that Bottas had never suffered back problems in the past and the news of his injury came ‘out of the blue.’
Nonetheless Smedley was impressed by Bottas’ performance despite suffering from significant pain:
“He was in a great deal of pain and he managed to be three tenths off that little group in front of him, so he has done a really good job.” he explained.
There seems to be very little between Ferrari and Williams in terms of performance and we anticipate a very close fight between two of the most established teams in F1. We wish Bottas a quick recovery and look forward to him fighting for a podium place.
A statement from the Williams F1 Team reveals Bottas spent the night in hospital after precautionary scans showed soft tissue damage to his lower back. The statement reads as follows:
“During yesterday’s qualifying session for the Australian Grand Prix, Valtteri Bottas developed a back injury which the team felt necessary to be examined by the FIA Medical Delegate at the circuit.
“Following this, he was transferred to Albert Hospital in Melbourne for further precautionary scans which revealed that Valtteri had sustained some soft tissue damage in his lower back.
“He remained in hospital overnight and following a restful night is now working with a physiotherapist prior to final assessment by the FIA in the early afternoon to determine whether he will be able to race later today.
“The team will release a further update as information is available.”
We understand that Williams will only field Mass’s car should Bottas be declared unfit to race.