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Pastor Maldonado: 'Williams close to top teams'

Maldonado: 'Williams close to top teams'
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Pastor Maldonado believes that Williams will have a competitive car for the 2013 Formula 1 season.

Pastor Maldonado has said that he expects Williams to be close to the top teams in Formula 1 in 2013.

The Venezuelan became the first driver to win a Grand Prix in a Williams car since 2004 at last season's Spanish Grand Prix.

The 27-year-old told Sky Sports News: "I think we are quite close to the [other] teams and we showed that last year. We are quite close to the top teams.

"It's always difficult to predict every year, you never know what the others are doing, but if we compare what we did last year and what we are doing for the next season, we have great potential and we feel confident with the package.

"And that is very important to feel confident with yourself and with the team with what you have to start the season. I know it's going to be very difficult because the competition is very tight, the driver level is very high as well, so it's going to be one more great season I hope."

The 2013 Williams, the FW35, will make its test debut next week in Barcelona.

Maldonado will race alongside F1 rookie Valtteri Bottas at Williams this season.

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