Maldonado: Williams are “back to three years ago”

2013 Australian Grand Prix

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Pastor Maldonado said Williams have gone backwards after being eliminated during Q1 for the Australian Grand Prix.

“I think we’re back to three years ago condition in the team,” said Maldonado. “We need to work very hard to solve the problems.”

“The car is undriveable at the moment. We need to work very and see.”

Maldonado’s words are in contrast to his pre-season optimism when he described the FW35 as the best car he’d had.

“The track is completely different, the conditions, everything. For any reason we didn’t adapt our car to this track in whatever the conditions is,” he said today.

“On the wet we were slow, on the dry as well so we’ll see the pace for tomorrow seems to be much better but [qualifying] pace is really bad.”

Team mate Valtteri Bottas made it through to Q2, which will be held tomorrow morning due to a rain delay.

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    Keith Collantine
    Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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    44 comments on “Maldonado: Williams are “back to three years ago””

    1. Chris (@tophercheese21)
      16th March 2013, 8:30

      Strange. At the Barcalona test, he said its the best car he’s ever driven.

      I guess it’s a similar situation with Mclaren.

    2. It’s still early days yet. I think we’ll get a better idea of where everyone stands in Malaysia, which is the first “normal” track of the season. However, Williams do seem to be well off the pace. They’re scrapping with the Torro Rossos and look well behind Force India and Sauber, which will certainly be a worry for them.

    3. Just a heads up, I think he said two years ago.

      It is such a shame, there were some good noises coming from Williams over winter testing…

      1. I heard that as well . The Rubens and Pastor struggled with the FW33 .

    4. OK so English is not his natural language but I’ve never known a driver talk so much rubbish, all the time.
      After a torrid 20mins on track, in performance equalizing conditions the car has gone from best car ever to blast from the past.
      How about this driver not having the skills to handle the conditions, unlike his rookie team mate?

      1. @psynrg

        After a torrid 20mins on track, in performance equalizing conditions the car has gone from best car ever to blast from the past.

        He has had three hours on Friday to test the car in the dry: during those hours, he and Bottas were seemingly unable to set-up the car properly, while they were able to do that in Montmelo, resulting in the bad handling he describes. That has to do with the major difference between a permanent track and a street circuit.

        What are you referring to with “I’ve never known a driver talk so much rubbish, all the time”? Can you give some examples instead of basing this on that unfounded claim?

        1. The deliberate crash into Lewis Spa 2011 : “this is formula 1” (**** eating grin, penalised by stewards)
          The deliberate crash into Perez, Monaco : “[Perez is] always crying. In Monaco it was a normal incident. I think we need to value where it’s intentional and where it’s not. For sure it was clear it was not intentional.” (Stewards found him guilty, fine and reprimand, Video clearly shows Maldonado swiping into Perez)
          Deliberate crash into Lewis, Valencia 2012 : “I was very quick at the end and he tried to put me out of the track. I tried to avoid the contact but I jumped over the kerb because he put me out of the track.” (Penalised again, video clearly shows him launching directly towards the side of Hamilton while his car was off track)

          Now he’s turning on the team for the fact that he’s been beaten by his rookie teammate. Didn’t get to set a lap on inters earlier? Guess what, Pastor, the team don’t hold you to ransom. There was nothing stopping you making your own call on tyres.

          I’ve said before I’ve got no time for this scumbag driver, and he only proves my point with every race that goes by. He treats his competitors, his engineers, and his team like c— and it couldn’t be clearer that without his Chavez money he wouldn’t be anywhere near an F1 paddock. I look forward to the day that the Venezualan parliament withdraw this funding.

          Put Suzie Wolff in the car. She’ll get beaten by Bottas too, but at least she won’t behave like a reprehensible, lying, dangerous scumbag while she’s doing it.

      2. He was faster than Bottas and putting in very good sector times before his crash.

        1. The secret is not to crash (you know like Bottas didn’t crash), not really Williams’ fault.

          Great way to get the team psyched up for the season ahead – tell them they’ve built a useless car. As I say, talking rubbish as usual – a verbal crash waiting to happen, much like his on track prowess.

    5. Wow

      . Just a tad harsh Maldonado!! Think about the engineers’/mechanics’ feelings

      1. [I meant to embolden the wow, not quote it haha]

    6. I’m sure his team are going to love these comments. Wasn’t he confidently predicting top 10 in qualy?

      I’m going to enjoy Bottas pasting him this season.

      1. Antonio (@frosty-jacks-racing-team)
        16th March 2013, 14:28

        +1. How on earth can you be so negative after 20 minutes driving in a lake and crashing??

    7. Williams are in a sorry state . Can’t blame Maldonado for being slower than Bottas though . He was doing his lap with the inters when Gutierrez crashed .

    8. I think in winter testing he said it was very easy to drive, though I never quite heard them say they would be fast. I guess driveable + slow = undriveable somehow.

      1. Yeah i dislike this stuff. Some drivers give you the impression they understand nothing on how the car behaves and are just happy when it’s fast while they complain that is undriveable when slow when actually they are just irradiated they ain’t fast and not because the car is undriveable.
        He was braising the car before all the time saying how easy was to drive and now his saying it’s undriveable. Well then *** where you doing in the test dude?

    9. Maldonado and Bottas don’t rank high on my list of drivers who can improve a car. Imo, they’d need a seasoned TD or 2nd driver who could help car development. Like they had with Wurz in 2007.

      1. @tmf42 Most here think Bottas is Future World Champion..

        1. I agree that he has the potential and his Friday stints should shorten the learning curve to give feedback to engineers. But there is still one and Maldonado isn’t the guy to compensate this for the team.

    10. The car is undriveable at the moment

      you had a very good one last year but instead of driving it properly you were busy in making crashes and stupid mistakes
      So enjoy now !!!!!!

      1. Dont know why you’re comment cracked me up

      2. +1 Maldonado wasted that car badly in 2012. His “speed” is nothing without the ability to deliver decent points.

        1. +1 ma
          That car was even faster than the Red Bull, Ferrari and Lotus in some races .
          I don’t know but this guy has an attitude that makes him hard to respect
          In the last couple of years he had never admit his faults and he kept saying a “that’s racing….”
          He throw away valuable points because of stupid mistakes and now in the first qualifying session and in wet condition he begins criticizing his team
          I don’t know if this is the effect of the “CASH”

    11. Sorry to all Pastor fans, but these words clearly are unfitting of an F1 driver. We had one wet session, in which he made mistakes(whilst Bottas didn’t). He should have remembered that he had said that the FW35 was a step-up from last year’s car, that it was the best car he’d driven.
      Frankly, the guys in the mid-grid should shut up and drive. This isn’t 2012, already we can see that the top 4 teams are far ahead. So chances of repeating the results from 2012 is a tough call to all these teams. Pastor’s words will not go down well with the Williams guys.
      It is probably too early to say but I think this is the start of a downward spiral for him. With a rookie teammate well capable of beating him, and without the riches of Hugo Chavez(may his soul rest in peace) this might be a difficult period for him. I hope for his sake that it doesn’t happen.

    12. Made yourself look bad, annoyed the team and bosses, gave your rivals a boost, and a huge confidence boost to your rookie team-mate. Oops.

      Go Bottas!

    13. Wow! Making excuses now? What does he want to say with “the car is undrivable at the moment”? I mean, maybe it’s not as good as last year’s car. But to go as far as calling it “undrivable”? I think he wants to make himself be seen as a hero if he suddenly starts to perform well with an “underperforming” car like Alonso did last year.
      I’m sorry for the fans from Maldonado, but his words did make me a bit anrgy.

    14. Gazzaguru (@garygushbiz-com)
      16th March 2013, 12:07

      Unfortunately most F1 drivers are prima donnas (temperamental & conceited person) – when things go well it’s all due to their own driving ability. Unfortunately when things go badly it always the car & the rest of the team.
      It’s not the best way of endearing yourself to your current team or any other potential teams if you’re still an unproven driver.

    15. I’m really disappointed with these comments. To say the team’s ‘condition’ is back to three years ago is absolute madness…it’s a very unrepresentative track that’s covered in water!

      It’s a shame, because when he’s good, he’s one of my favourites – but it seems his anger and recklessness on track is all tied in with his behaviour off it. This is just a knee jerk reaction, I’m hoping, but seriously…

    16. Maldonado taking a cue from Chavez’s brand of public relations: if something goes wrong, it must be everybody else’s fault. To think about it for a moment, maybe this highlights one facet of the pay driver debate that’s not touched on normally – would someone whose place in the team depended solely on performance feel entitled to make those comments?

    17. Bit ironic that Pastor is blaming the team for the performance when he has crashed and ruined so many races for Williams last year. I didn’t see Frank Williams coming out and blaming him last year. He is lucky to have a seat and shows how selfish he is

    18. Quoting Kieth’s article –

      Maldonado described the car as being “completely different” to last year’s FW34. “This car seems to be more easy to drive, but easy doesn’t mean quick.”

    19. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
      16th March 2013, 13:59

      This is utterly preposterous. He didn’t get a clean lap on the inters; what the hell was he expecting? Pole? He has already mentioned getting another win this year, and I think the win has gone to his head, and I don’t think that it has clicked that he may never win a race ever again. Actually all of Maldonado’s comments regarding the FW35 have been a bit weird. At first it was “a great car that can challenge the top teams”, secondly it was the tyres’ fault and now it’s as bad as the FW33. I actually have the sidepod bodywork and a rear wing end plate from the FW33 hanging on my walls, and it looks so good that I think that the car was actually designed with that very purpose in mind. It seems clear to me that FW35 is not merely fit to be displayed on the walls of London apartments, I just think they, rather like McLaren, have departed rather too far from their 2012 car, and have been a bit too ambitious. However, I think they still look better than Toro Rosso and seem to be on par with Sauber, so its hardly a disaster of 2011 proportions. I know I’m attributing the villain looks and poor English, but Maldonado does seem to be rather academically challenged (ahem…thick…), and he seems to be thinking that wins could become a fairly regular occurance with Williams, although perhaps a simpler explanation for this outburst can be found on page 1 of the racing driver’s excuses handbook: “I mucked up, so it’s the car’s fault.”

    20. So when the team makes a very good car and then gives it to the hands of two under performing drivers they should say nothing to avoid upsetting their drivers. Then when the team has trouble with the car after just three practice sessions of the year and one of the three qualifying sessions, Maldonardo comes up with this crap? The guy even crashed and got out qualified by his rookie team mate who did make it through to Q2.
      What a disgusting attitude!

    21. C.J. (@theseeker411)
      16th March 2013, 15:43

      Meanwhile, in the back of an Aston Martin racing trailer, Bruno Senna is laughing at Maldina-doh!

    22. Talk about Maldonado all you want, but I got a sweet spot for him: my son is 3 since december and when he saw that Williams, he spontaneously yelled: ‘Maldonado!’

    23. I don’t get where these comments are from, in the BBC cut all he said was.

      “The car is slow.”

      1. Need to keep that Maldonado smear campaign going strong, I suppose.

        But I will admit though that wet racing is not his forté.

    24. PortugueseFan
      16th March 2013, 17:45 – Last year i read this (portuguese) , which kinda prepared me for what is happening

    25. Meanwhile, telemetry reports coming in from the car report that Maldanado is “undriveable”.


      Williams going back to launch spec.Seems like they already did something wrong with developing the car for the first race.Doesn´t sound good at all.

    27. I see some on-track talent and also the courage to make bold moves, mistakes and learn from them and try to improve, but I don’t think this kind of of-track mistake = ******* in your own nest publicly, is as easily discarded as a young drivers mistake on his way up the grid.
      But if You wanted to make the début in F1 difficult for the rookies You probably couldn’t have started of better.

    28. Yep just seen Q1, the car looks very very bad at the moment.

      At the point the Williams (I forget who) was being followed by Vettel it looked to be loosing the rear end and going wide while the Red Bull was on rails.

    29. Nice to see the site’s comments has again reached its typical levels of anti-Pastor drivel.

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