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F1 NEWS 

Williams buoyed by Chinese Grand Prix performance

Bruno Senna, Williams, China 2012Williams' chief operations engineer Mark Gillan says the team has been buoyed by its performance in the Chinese Grand Prix.

Williams, which last year endured the worst F1 season in its history, has bounced back strongly in 2012 with both Bruno Senna and Pastor Maldonado finishing in the points at Shanghai last weekend.

The Grove team has scored 18 points in the first three races of the year, 13 more than during the entire 2011 season.

Although Gillan says Williams does not want to get ahead of itself, he is convinced the team is finally 'getting there'.

"I'll stick to my guns and say top 10 is the aim; both cars in the top 10, which we achieved," Gillan told AUTOSPORT. "So we're still to meet our goals, but then they are end goals for the season. We don't want to get ahead of ourselves, but we're getting there.

"The whole team has been buoyed by this result. Everybody from the factory through to the drivers have done a superb job, and we expect that to continue in Bahrain."

Gillan said the team was very happy with the performance of its drivers in the previous race, where Senna finished in seventh and Maldonado in eighth.

"It's really, really pleasing. We went out to make a two-stop strategy work and we knew that it would be maybe marginal on the tyres, and as it [panned out], it was. So the drivers were fighting hard with everyone around, but obviously trying to manage the tyres at the same time.

"So we did an excellent job. Really pleasing in terms of the pace. We have to have a look at the general setup in terms of the race. Pastor, on the last stint, was particularly strong just on the first few laps of that stint. Very pleased with both drivers."

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