Williams “relieved” car appears competitive

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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In the round-up: Williams say they are relieved the FW36 looks like being competitive this year.


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Williams relief ahead of new F1 season (BBC)

Claire Williams: “I’m surprised and relieved we have what’s looking like a competitive car. But you have to temper that because you don’t know what the other teams are doing and whether there is any sandbagging.”

Dennis: Lewis could return (Sky)

“I know Lewis’s character and he was bitterly disappointed to not win the [2012] Singapore Grand Prix. Strangely enough it wasn’t the failure of a McLaren component that forced him to stop in that race, but nevertheless he was vulnerable and the right offer at the right time was made to him and so he jumped.”

Horner: We haven’t become idiots overnight (The Telegraph)

“We know we don’t have the pace to challenge the Mercedes teams at the moment, but it’s very much a case of see where we are in Melbourne. Then we know the scale and magnitude of what we have to climb.”

Sebastian Vettel admits Red Bull are having a ‘bloody difficult time’ in quest to achieve record-equalling fifth consecutive championship (The Independent)

“Everybody is fine. It’s just a bloody difficult time because it’s a difficult car to work on.”

India not giving up hope of Formula One return (Reuters)

“‘It’s unfortunate but once the government gives the recognition I am very hopeful that Mr Ecclestone’s concerns will be satisfied,’ Akbar Ebrahim, the chairman of racing at FMSCI, told Reuters on Thursday.”

Jaypee keen on having F1 in 2015, Ecclestone in 2016 (Business Standard)

Jaypee Sports International chief executive Sameer Gaur: “As I have said earlier, I would want the race to return next year but let’s see what comes out from the meeting with Mr. Ecclestone.”

Williams Martini: A winning cocktail (ESPN)

“Gordon Murray’s already gorgeous BT44 was set off perfectly by the Martini Brabham colour scheme in 1975. Gordon says that the BT44B was one of favourites because of this, but he admits the livery was down to his boss, a certain Mr Ecclestone. ‘It was all Bernie,’ says Gordon. ‘He loved doing that sort of thing and, to be honest, he had a great eye for such detail. It just made that car.'”

Jochen Mass: the man who knew when to stop (McLaren)

Gilles [Villeneuve’s] death was profoundly shocking to Jochen – understandably so. But, in those days, F1 folk did not stop or take stock when deaths occurred. So Jochen duly drove in the next day’s Belgian Grand Prix, retiring after 60 laps with engine failure.”


Comment of the day

The new Williams livery drew much praise.

I too would like to see more of the Martini stripes than white. But, the white base is very “old school” and plays well to Williams as an old school f1 race team. White also makes it easier to spot leaks.

Overall, I think Williams has done the best job this year. Great buzz, great marketing of new sponsors released slowly to keep them in the headlines, solid testing results, and awesome signing to cut out the Maldonado cancer and bring in someone as well-liked and quick as Massa.

I will always be a Tifosi first, but Williams is my next favourite. I sure hope Massa can get a win/podiums this year.
Christopher (@Twiinzspeed)

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On this day in F1

New team Simtek announced Roland Ratzenberger would drive for them in at least the first five races of the 1994 season on this day 20 years ago.

Another driver deal was announced as Arrows enlisted Gianni Morbidelli for the new season. Meanwhile Tyrrell shook down the first of their new 022 chassis.

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51 comments on “Williams “relieved” car appears competitive”

  1. So is Ron Dennis implying the part responsible for Hamilton’s Singapore retirement was in the Mercedes portion of the car?

    1. It was the gearbox, but did/do Mercedes make McLaren’s gearboxes?

      1. Some gearbox components are made by local component suppliers, I have a cross pin in my Mini made by a supplier to McLaren F1 team.

      2. I thought McLAren make their own gearboxes, @receprouk, but I guess its only the casing and the internals come from Mercedes then? Or maybe it was something else that broke?

        1. The gearbox is officially entirely designed in house by McLaren – which is why, until recently, Force India bought their transmission from McLaren – although realistically they will be sourcing components from outside of McLaren.

          However, that supplier would still be producing the component to a design developed by McLaren, so Ron is being a little disingenuous when stating it wasn’t a “McLaren part” – maybe it wasn’t manufactured by McLaren, but it was probably designed by them.

          Equally, Ron does seem to be oversimplifying things a little regarding the position with Hamilton. Whilst Lauda has made it clear that he certainly stepped up negotiations with Hamilton in the wake of the Singapore GP, he has indicated that was because Hamilton was already showing signs that he wanted to move to Mercedes before the Singapore GP – similarly, Whitmarsh has made comments in the past that suggest Hamilton may have made the decision to switch to Mercedes just before, rather than after, the Singapore GP.

    2. @us_peter @raceprouk
      Actually , I believe he scrapped the wall in his Q3 attempt and the feedback caused strain in his gearbox . I read somewhere after that they had two options , change the gearbox and start from the back or to risk it.They went for the latter.As a Lewis fan , 2012 is a year that was so depressing to watch as most of his efforts went in vain.

      1. @hamilfan It was so painful… Seeing him at the top of his game, but for once it to be everything else that fell apart to stop him. I still think it could have been his year.

    3. Not any of the other let downs that season? That was just the last straw

      1. I think that was the first race of the year where he lost a win. And that race was pivotal- he still had a shot at the championship at that point and, considering the number of rounds remaining, he needed to get a good haul of points over Alonso and ensure that he both reduced the number of points Vettel took away and got more himself. He was on track, on form, then was let down.

  2. Williams sure are blowing their own horn a bit prematurely. Its going to be terribly embarrassing if they dont now go and win the WDC.

    1. But you have to temper that because you don’t know what the other teams are doing and whether there is any sandbagging.

      Doesn’t exactly reek of arrogance, does it?

    2. what are you referring to? the tweet above is by martini – you cannot blame williams for that.

    3. @joshua-mesh Williams aren’t really blowing their own horn here. It seems to me as though Susie Wolff struck the right balance between confidence and cautiousness, that the Merc teams have been touting.

    4. Williams have got a long way to go in order to win the WDC and/or the WCC- 3 seasons, I should think. That’s how long it took them to win their very first championship. Unfortunately, they don’t have any engineers as brilliant as Patrick Head there- the man who was really the reason why they were so competitive in the 80’s and 90’s.

      1. And one of the reasons for their falling in the late-90’s/2000’s…

        For example, he was one of the factors behind Adrian Newey leaving.

        1. Newey wanted to be Technical Director there but Head owned 30% of the company, and being a shareholder, he had decision making rights. So in a way, that’s true. But ever since Head was demoted, Williams have only won 1 race, in 2012- and while he was was TD, Williams were always competitive. They are a great team but they need a greater budget and some truly stellar engineers, ones of the caliber that Red Bull, Ferrari, Mercedes and McLaren have.

        2. *Head was demoted in 2004, and Williams were not competitve in ’98 and ’99 because they were using old rebadged Renault engines.

    5. I don’t think they are already thinking about WDC or WCC, they sense that their car is competitive and they should be fighting for podiums.

      I’m happy for the team and for teh Williams family. Actually I’m happy for Massa too, it will be fun to watch him racing against Alonso provided that they both have fairly paired cars.

    6. It seems to be a trend, but actually I like to see that kind of self confidence, with a bit of tongue in cheek. Mercedes on the other hand with their “The right team, the right time” campain, is a bit too cocky for me. It seems like something you would make after the championship has been won, or at least wait to see if the promising start to the season actually came true.
      Anyways… someone make it racetime already – I can’t wait!

      1. @testacorsa

        Mercedes on the other hand with their “The right team, the right time” campain, is a bit too cocky for me.

        Really? “The right team, the right team” is as inoffensive as it gets, especially when the spot shows key people in the team.

        1. Yeah really – lol
          I didn’t say offensive but c*cky…
          As I see it:
          “The right team” indicates they will win.
          “The right time” indicates they will win now.

          They obviously expect/hope, but they know neither, and the season hasn’t begun yet!

          The video showed the meaning behind their motto, but I still thought it was a poor choice of words.

  3. OmarR-Pepper (@)
    7th March 2014, 0:16

    It’s a little early to “celebrate at the podium” Felipe. First you need to prove yourself at FP1, FP2, Q1, Q2, Q3, race start and finishing line. THEN you can celebrate, as in Brazil 2008.
    (Massa fans, just kidding :P)

    1. Always pays to be prepared ;-)

      1. For once I want a driver to declare he will be the greatest at the end of the year. Just once. Ricky Bobby style.

    2. I bet that car will land at least a podium in the first 3 rounds.

      1. Yeah .. but most probably in Bottas’s hands

    3. I think he should practice to avoid problems like he kicking the champagne off the podium

  4. “Presenting the one and only @MassaFelipe19 practicing for many celebrations in 2014”

    Strong statement that..
    I know a few drivers currently in F1 car who are superstitious..
    I know confidence and positive thinking can have a great effect and create momentum but we haven’t even seen half the teams in full race mode.
    I personally don’t think counting the chickens at this stage of incubation is wise.
    It can put unnecessary pressure on the team/driver to live up to and realize those expectations.
    I hope their enthusiasm and confidence is followed by real podium celebrations for Massa and Williams, they both deserve it and have a great opportunity.
    Equally looking forward to the possibility of seeing Bottas rise through the ranks!

  5. No words to describe how beatifull this car is! Simply amazing… The best of the 2014 Grid!

  6. I’ve been hoping that this might be Rosberg’s year to shine, and it may well be. But I’m a long time fan of Williams F1 as well. Given their early form in testing, I find myself also, cautiously, excited about Massa maybe pulling off a stunner of a season. I’m not really anti any team, but it would be very cool to see him keep Ferrari in his rear view mirrors this year.

  7. If Williams want more publicity for their new major sponsors they’ll announce a new driver pairing of Pier Luigi Martini and Martini Brundle.

    1. They could probably recruit Martini Whitmarsh at the moment too.

  8. Ron is missing his wonder boy, huh? I think Ron is right, Lewis was inclined to stay but the team messed up and Niki Lauda took advantage of it but in the end of the day, seems to me Lewis made the right call.

  9. I’ve heard a couple of times now that disassembling the car is a lengthy chore – especially due to the placement of the batteries right below the fuel tank. I’m wondering if the FIA wasn’t doing the teams a disservice by forcing the placement of batteries there, because they are likely to fail – which will mean increased workloads for the mechanics and reduced track time in practice sessions.

  10. Mercedes secrets revealed .LOL

  11. In regards to the COTD, yes it does make me wonder that Williams…..sorry Williams Martini wouldn’t have had the same level of excitement from the fans as well within the team if Pastor Maldonado was still in there. No disrespect to GDP of Congo equivalent Venezuelan but I always felt that he generally brought in negativity in the team and the fans. This year it clearly is a revival of sorts for the team.

    1. +1 Glad he’s gone too, I was fed up with him long before he accused his own team of sabotage, Maldonaldo true colors right there.
      Hopefully see the back of him after this year.

  12. Banco Brasil, ah, Felippe for the Williams seat now makes sense…

    1. Banco Brasil is actually the reason Felipe Nasr is their 3rd driver. Massa was already signed well ahead of the deal.

  13. I hope the bring back the laurel wreaths! Felipe looks great in that pic, really nostalgic!!

  14. Horner: We haven’t become idiots overnight (The Telegraph)…… ` We`ve had to work on it over the winter ! lol . Bad joke – i know. :)

    1. @mr-rossi

      It actually made me chuckle, it was a good one :)

    2. hahaha. When I read the first sentence of your comment I knew what was coming in the next sentence. Very funny.

  15. I am genuinely excited by the prospect of seeing Vettel struggle with a genuinely bad car for the start of 2014. Winnning so convincingly from the front is a skill in itself which I feel he is undercredited for, but it doesn’t afford him the opportunity to display his skill in direct combat often – that I am very interested to see.

    1. During this DRS infested era, I am ready to get disappointed by the “battles” we are offered.
      As long as this vile abomination is required to infect the cars, we’ll never again be treated with performances like Webber pulled off in Singapore 2010.

    2. I agree that its something to look forward to @vettel1, I am sure that Vettel will be able to show us some quite special races coming from the back.

      1. Youpi!!! good racing this year, Youpi!!! @bascb

        1. Yes, exactly that @pmccarthy_is_a_legend, glad you took that one to heart!

    3. Although I don’t want Vettel to win a WDC this year, I was hoping he wouldn’t be left with an absolute stinker of a car.

      I want to see him in a competitive car, one that isn’t dominant, but good enough to fight for poles and wins. Wouldn’t want Vettel to lose a WDC purely because he didn’t have a car capable of fighting. I feel it’s a ready made excuse if you’re car cannot even last a race distance

  16. I saw some fans complaining that they wanted to see the Williams car more colorful. I think the main reason the livery is ‘discreet’ is because of budget. Probably Martini didn’t pay enough to have the stripes and logo on the sidepods, (like some nice simulations http://www.grandprixgames.org/read.php?4,1012237,1016972#msg-1016972). They might be still expecting a premium sponsor there. But imho the car looks brilliant as it is.

    1. Less is ‘more’.

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