Symonds to leave Williams at end of year

2016 F1 season

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Williams chief technical officer Pat Symonds will step down from his role at the end of the season, the team has confirmed.

Symonds joined Williams in late 2013. The team moved up to third in the constructors’ championship in 2014 where it remained the following year, before slipping to fifth this season.

Deputy team principal Claire Wiliams said Symonds “has been a tremendous asset to this team over the past three years”.

“Pat’s appointment was the start of a major restructuring exercise, and he has been pivotal in reshaping Williams into what is a much stronger racing team today.”

“I would like to thank him for all of his hard work and commitment during that time. We now look to the future and will be announcing details regarding the team’s technical leadership in due course.”

Symonds previously worked for Toleman, Benetton and Renault where he contributed to championship successes in 1995-96 and 2005-06. However his involvement in 2008’s Crashgate scandal led to his temporary departure from the sport. He returned with the Virgin team, which later became Marussia, before moving to Williams.

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Keith Collantine
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28 comments on “Symonds to leave Williams at end of year”

  1. Exit Pat, enter Paddy Lowe.

    1. It makes me wonder where will Symonds go after this. Maybe a return to Renault is in the works?

      1. He is 63 years old, maybe retirement….

  2. So it looks like Paddy will start working at the team as of Jan 1, because they most likely made a deal in giving up Bottas Merc would remove his gardening leave, this is becoming too predictable.

  3. I expect in about a week we’ll hear that Paddy Lowe is filling the vacant technical director position at Mercedes, and that Pat Symonds will come out of retirement for a one-year deal with Williams.

  4. Symonds must go to jail, together with Briattore and Alonso because of Crashgate at Singapóre 2008. All of three are criminals.

    1. What I want to know is, why, according to you, is Alonso a criminal but Piquet isn’t?

      I don’t think Piquet is a “criminal” particularly, however the idea of blaming Alonso when the evidence clearly doesn’t exist, yet somehow nobody mentions that Piquet actually did it.

      1. All four of them are complicit. All four worthy of what ever adjective you prefer. Not a sportsman among them.

      2. @strontium, because Jorge has an extremely obsessive hatred of those three (to the point where it seems to be bordering on outright mental illness, I am sorry to say) and will therefore find any excuse he can to throw accusations and abuse at them.

        1. No that we have begun with unfounded accusations we can also accuse Mr Lardone of being personally responsible of the global warming (ALL of it I mean), the murder of Heliogabalus and the demise of the dinosaurs. Yeah, he should probably go to jail too.

        2. Four years later…

      3. @strontium While I don’t agree with @jorge-lardone particular take on this, I can see the why Piquet may be viewed as the pawn in the events which took place. Alonso was assured of anything he wanted being Alonso, and Flav’s top driver and all. Piquet was struggling to make headway in F1 – possibly threatened with losing his seat if he didn’t play along.

        1. It’s not only that there’s not a shred of evidence that Alonso was involved in the incident. It’s that it just doesn’t make sense for him to be.

          He was already a double WDC and had no chance whatsoever of coming near a third title in 2008. What’s the point of winning one more race?

          Why Briatore and Symonds went to those extremes I don’t know but we know for a fact they did. Of Alonso we know nothing.

          1. @eaglemk1i would have agreed until a few weeks back when i became aware that Briatore remains alonso’s Manager. That to me implies alonso did not mind terribly much. Which kinda DOES make him a terrible sport.

      4. Piquet was very young, and was “forced” by Briattore (known Italian ganster) to crash his car against the barriers, through threats related to his personal life.
        He was a victim, in any case of the three other criminals who conspired to make the worst unsporting event in the history of Formula 1

        1. Jonathan Parkin
          21st December 2016, 7:42

          I believe Fernando didn’t know about Crashgate because Flavio would want to safeguard his career – which would have been over btw if Fernando had had anything to do with it. My other feeling about this incident is Flavio was rather stupid in letting Nelson go after this – and indeed it was his firing that opened up this can of worms in the first place. If I had been in Flavio’s position I would have seen to it that Piquet Jr was the happiest driver in F1

    2. Why? If you gambled money and lost, oh well that’s life and gambling on sport has NEVER NEVER EVER been on the level and anyone who pretends it has been clean is delusional. If you want to argue the rules violation, fine and appropriate but guess what, that’s the FIA’s job and NEVER a job for a criminal decision. They violated no actual criminal laws but rather the rules of the sport and so the sport has jurisdiction not a criminal court. If one had tried any harder F1 would be done, Renault would be banned from returning and possibly whichever state tried it banned from FIA certification of any events within their country.

    3. Lewisham Milton
      21st December 2016, 18:16

      Rosberg finished second, he gained from the safety car as well. Lock him up too, he won’t be missing anything anyway.

      1. The guy I’d jail if I could for Singapore ’08 is the responsible for the fuel hose mishap at Ferrari with Massa, I was utterly gutted to watch him miss that WDC.

  5. everybody leaves everything..the story of 2016

  6. An absolute asset to Williams, there is no question he was an important part of Williams’s performance gains in recent years. With Lowe seemingly on his way over, we can only hope Williams continues an upward trajectory.

    1. @fletch actually I have the opposite opinion. When he joined they were already developing what turned out to be the third best car, taking advantage of a good engine. Yet over his three years it’s got progressively worse, not just compared to the big teams but also the likes of Force India, who have beaten them on merit of this.

      1. Well @strontium this year could be the result of FIndia putting more into the 16 car than Williams were prepared to do. With VJ’s current situation they may have wanted all the prize money they could get. I’m just surmising, we’ll ultimately know next year.
        What is troubling to me is the yoyo that Williams does in terms of performance. It seems about a three year cycle and also hard to seemingly break out of. I thought Pat Symonds was great for the team and he was motivated to break that cycle in a post Frank/Patrick team. Makes me wonder if internally something is up. Best of luck to Paddy. Always liked Williams..

  7. Well seems obvuious.

  8. Never liked the guy, and certainly never trusted him after crash gate!

    IMO good riddance; hope it lasts this time.

  9. Symonds needs to get in to Mclaren. That team could use all the help it gets.

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