“No excuses” for Q1 elimination – Williams

2014 British Grand Prix

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Williams must not repeat the errors which led to both drivers being eliminated during the first part of today’s rain-hit qualifying session at Silverstone, head of performance engineering Rob Smedley says.

Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa failed to progress to Q2 partly because the team failed to anticipate an incoming rain shower.

“We were trying to mark the people on track but our timings were wrong,” said Smedley.

“We didn’t see the rain coming as quickly as it did, but that’s not an excuse, it’s an error which we can’t make again.”

Felipe Massa said he knew his session was ruined as soon as the rain returned.

“We didn’t expect the rain and the track was drying so we had to get the lap in,” he said. “The moment it started raining again, that was it, it was over.”

Massa believes his car is “quicker than where we are” but said today’s qualifying session was “a missed opportunity to get the car in a good position for tomorrow”.

2014 British Grand Prix

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Image © Williams/LAT

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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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11 comments on ““No excuses” for Q1 elimination – Williams”

  1. brought back to earth.

  2. yet again they bugger it up, sack the clown that is in charge of strategy,
    they have the car yet can not produce the goods, wasted space if you ask me.

  3. Whoever is in charge of strategy at Williams needs to be fired TODAY. It is one mistake after the other, non stop. Ridiculous.
    F1Fanatic, I suggest a story about the last time a team locked front row in one race just to be eliminated in Q1 in the next race. I don’t remember it ever happening before!

    1. Same could go for Ferrari, equally bad decision making today. Both should be ashamed of themselves.

    2. Toyota went from front row lockout in Bahrain 2009 to not only out in Q1, but back row lockout just two races later. Don’t think it’s ever happened at the very next race though!

    3. Williams have been hopeless at strategy for years, if not decades. It’s hardly a new phenomenon.

      If you look at their pit wall, they have a raft of hugely experienced people, like Smedley, Symonds and so on. There are no excuses, really. Even Marussia, whose budget is around £4.50, got it right.

  4. Again, Williams?!? This is just getting worrying, they have a great car (long time coming) but they just keep slipping up on strategy and the occasional driver error.

    They’ve already thrown away a huge amount of points, if they keep on going like this Williams’ 2014 could be one of the biggest “what might’ve been” seasons we’ve ever seen.

    I really don’t want to see that, the team are so overdue a consistently good season but if they keep shooting themselves in the foot…..

    1. They might easily get to 3rd in WCC still, and it’s not far from their car’s potential. Not sure if it’s overall faster in all tracks or over half of the tracks vs RBR.

      1. 3rd is definitely possible, as you said it wouldn’t be a big stretch for the car, but as for the team running the car? 3rd isn’t out of their reach, but they do need to do better. They could potentially have already been 3rd at this stage…

  5. As they are learning again how it is to be a top team again, mistakes are bound to be made.
    With ferrary and hamilton they are not alone.

    As long as they learn from it then nothing is lost.
    Main thing, nothing is won until you cross the finish line you just need to be ontrack for that.
    What i would do if i was Williams ( and ferrari) do not play it save . OPen up the engine parameters, on car on a long run and one on a agressive run. But get them in when the tires are starting to degrade and not 3+ laps later.

  6. Pat Fry (Stategy Chief Ferrari) probably will find an excuse, he might not know the country or he is not familiar with UK’s weather (I am sure it must be difficult for a guy from Shepperton)

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