Sergey Sirotkin, Williams, Red Bull Ring, 2018

Sirotkin doesn’t regret taking Williams drive

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In the round-up: Sergey Sirotkin says he doesn’t regret taking the chance to make his Formula 1 debut with Williams despite the team’s poor start to the season.

What they say

Sirotkin was asked whether he would still have chosen to drive for Williams in 2018 if he’d know how hard the season was going to be for them.

For sure. As I say it is tough, and you know for a rookie driver it’s so much easier to get in a car which is much easier to drive. For sure if you are in F1 you have a talent and you are a quick driver, it’s so much easier to open up and do the job.

At same time it does really give you something extra which not many drivers face in their season. I’m not in the best position to be sitting in front of you saying if I did good or bad. But I’m in a good position to kind of prove something to some people that in a difficult moment, a difficult situation, I can still deliver and be a guy who can pull up the team.

And I do really appreciate taking this position, taking this challenge and responsibility and pay it back with a race like I did [in Hungary] or in Germany.

Quotes: Dieter Rencken

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Comment of the day

Will Force India take Stroll’s money – and what would that mean for the team?

I’ve always been a fan of Force India. True garagistas punching way above their weight time after time with limited resources. I’ve also always felt that they were a cash injection away from being serious contenders, possibly heading the midfield queue and snatching the not-so-odd podium or even the odd race win.

If that cash injection comes conditional with the younger Stroll as lead driver, however (which he would be… it’d basically be his team) then my enthusiasm for this team will follow whichever departing driver out the door, sadly. Lance hasn’t shown me anything that suggests he’s hiding any performance, and his current level is sorely lacking.

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On this day in F1

  • 65 years ago today Formula 1’s first world champion Giuseppe Farina scored his final world championship victory in the German Grand Prix at the Nurburgring Nordschleife

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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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28 comments on “Sirotkin doesn’t regret taking Williams drive”

  1. Re: COTD

    Whist I agree largely with the sentiment of the comments (like you I’m fairly enthusiastic about their ability to punch well above their weight), I’m not totally prepared to write off Lance Stroll yet. I don’t think we can underestimate just how bad the Williams car is. Looking at it on track, it seems to be almost undriveable (both this year and last year) on most tracks so I think its fairly difficult to assess the capability (or otherwise) of their drivers.

    I can’t see Lance being “lead” driver though assuming FI retain at least one of their current two drivers – they’re in a different class at the moment and I doubt that Stroll Snr would be expecting anything other than Lance being a “driver”.

    1. I would add to this that Lance *has* shown something that suggests he’s hiding performance; his wet qualifying in Monza was something special, and I don’t think you’ll find very many talentless drivers who can produce a performance like that. In fact, he’s been consistently pretty good in the wet, so that might hint at some untapped ability level.

      Beyond that however, it’s very difficult to evaluate him since Massa left the team. We don’t know Sirotkin’s level, so all we really know is that Lance’s level is a bit above it at present.

      1. Well, Massa completely trashed Stroll on saturdays and Sirotkin is doing the same.
        The russian is less experienced but has more raw talent. He is already the quicker of the two and that says it all.
        Stroll has better starts and that’s it as the car is so bad we can’t say much more.

        Last years car was pretty decent. Massa scored points on THIRTEEN races and was on way to win Azerbaijan when the car failed. He was also taken out in Canada in a position for good points.

    2. @dbradock I feel the same away about the COTD as well.

      1. Am I the only person curious to see what Sirotkin can do? I followed Lance through F3 and was willing to give him some time. Just like I said in defence of Maldonado a few years back “a reigning champ with a wedge of cash. It’s a no brainer for a team in that position.” I’m a Williams fan and times are hard, but we have a history of bringing some big talents up.

        I’m hoping that Lance gets the FI job. And we can bring Hulkenburg (likely to be ousted at Renault) back. Unlike Lance and Robert this will give us a solid metric to measure Sergei against. Because I’m not completely convinced he’s entirely duff.

        If nothing else I agree with his comments in the first article. He’s kept his head together in a tough debut.

        1. digitalrurouni
          2nd August 2018, 14:46

          Err why would Hulkenberg be ousted from Renault?

          1. Possibly to make way for Ocon. I was a little strong with the word “likely”. Especially now that the whole midfield line-up is up in the air, pending an outcome from the Force India debacle.

          2. Apologies. No need to panic NH fans I completely fabricated that in my head. For some reason I thought I’d read elsewhere that Renault were now considering Sainz/Ocon but can’t find anything to suggest I didn’t make it up.

            I’d still like to see Hulk back at Williams.

          3. Sainz is the one without a contract with Renault as he is borrowed from Red Bull so expect him to make room for Ocon. The Hulk stays with Renault.

  2. That rainbow-themed Williams picture – oh my, when you have no clue what’s happening to your aero, you need all hues of flow-vis paint to try and figure it out.

    1. Usually the teams use flowiz to check problematic parts of the car to help them figure out issues. In williams’ case it seems the whole car is a problem they are trying to understand..

      1. Sush Meerkat
        2nd August 2018, 4:40

        Haas should paint Grosjean in flow viz To see where his problem is.

        1. +1 this made me chuckle.

          As a Grosjean fan his year is not the best…

    2. In fairness to them, they’re testing the new for 2019 front wing, which affects the airflow over the entire car end to end. But yeh without the 2019 wing I’m sure they would still need a liberal dousing of paint!

    3. ColdFly (@)
      2nd August 2018, 8:45

      It is the new front wing though; makes sense to check the airflow around the whole car, @phylyp.

      Grosjean in flow viz ;-)

      1. @unicron2002 @coldfly – ah, don’t I feel silly now? Good point, both of you!

  3. What else could sirotkin say. It would be pretty negative thing to say aloud that going to williams was a mistake because the the team built such a bad car. It would hurt anyone who is trying to fix things. Not only would it be a statement that going to williams was a mistake but also a confirmation that things are not going to improve.

    But more importantly sirotkin needs to make sure the money keeps coming from russia. He needs to make sure there is an illusion of future improvement at williams or his paydriver status turns into unemployed driver. He couldn’t say anything else or he’d literally risk his seat. Nobody wants to invest on something that is a guaranteed loss. At the moment that looks like to be sirotkin’s f1 career at williams.

    And williams is doing their hardest to keep stroll and sirotkin. They need the money. It must be a bizarre situation at williams. In reality williams probably wants different drivers and their drivers want to drive in a different team with much better cars. But just because of the money they all need to tow the party line. “Things are progressing, we are not happy but working hard and fully committed and we feel our decisions have been correct.” But after the press event is over they all check their f1 tinders to see if something better is available.

  4. First Williams recall the famous Martini livery, now they’re treating us to Benetton! :D

  5. That’s fine… Nice of Siri to keep the seat warm for Kubica while Williams get their act together for next year… Maybe there was a reason why they didn’t want to waste Kubica’s talents on a canal boat of a car this year!

  6. I’ve been surprised and impressed with Sirotkin this season. He seems to have a great attitude. Everything that come out of Williams about him is positive, he’s at the factory all the time with the engineers, you don’t hear him whinging about the car over the radio it’s all cool and calm. I love that he bought all his engineers the gold bracelets as a joke and they’re all wearing them – that’s great team building.

    I really, REALLY wanted Kubica to get the seat this year but Sirotkin has impressed me and I hope he has a good future in the sport.

    1. I did not know the gold bracelet fact – that’s awesome! Agreed about Sirotkins personality.

  7. Would LS be drivein an F1 car without daddys bank roll. I fhink Not. He is not that good and does note but wine about the settup ect.

    1. Would LS be drivein an F1 car without daddys bank roll.

      I think he probably would have given the performance he showed in the lower categories.

      I think the only thing his family having money did was get him to F1 sooner than he otherwise would have, Probably 2 years too soon to be honest & I think he’s had the difficult time he’s had because he wasn’t fully ready.

      He should have gone to GP3 or F2 & spent a year or 2 there. Had he done that & showed the pace he had shown prior (Which is something his critics like to ignore, He was actually very good in junior categores) I think he’d be ready for F1 in 2019 & likely also wouldn’t have the negativity aimed at him from many fans as he has.

      1. Do some research. His junior success came because he had an f1 budget in f3.. he had Ferrari engineers and pit crew.. were taking a budget 100 times his rivals. There are articles on the internet where thr best drivers of his generation got wind he would he competing in f3 and their managers and agents actually put them in different categories for those 2 years such as in Japan in order to not waste competing against and unfair budget. Also many former team mate quotes that prove his advantage in those categories. So in conclusion he has achieved nothing and doesnt deserve to be anywhere near formula 1…

  8. Good point(s) from Sirotkin about his team’s situation. The coloring of the FW41 during yesterday’s test, though.

  9. Thomas Bennett (@felipemassadobrasil)
    2nd August 2018, 19:04

    They might as well just stick Mansell in the car. No disrespect to Sirotkin or Stroll, but the car is such a mess they will probably not score points anyway so they could just raise the PR level

  10. Is there any news on Nikki Lauda’s conditions after the surgery. Reports suggesting he is in intensive care. Hope he’s fine though.

Comments are closed.