George Russell, Robert Kubica, Williams, Circuit de Catalunya, 2019

“Absolutely no difference” between Kubica and Russell’s cars – Williams

2019 British Grand Prix

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Williams deputy team principal Claire Williams has described claims her drivers are not given equal equipment as “crazy”.

Robert Kubica has been out-qualified by his rookie team mate George Russell in all nine races this year and only finished a race in front of him once. This has prompted speculation among Kubica’s supporters that the drivers’ cars are being run in different specifications.

Williams firmly rejected such claims. “There is absolutely no difference between George and Robert’s car,” she said.

“If anything else, we don’t have the budget to create two different types of race cars. So this speculation is just crazy.

“We do everything to make sure that both George and Robert have the same equipment, the same test items at every race weekend that we can to give them the best opportunity going into Saturday and Sunday.”

The team has endured a troubled start to its 2019 campaign as the FW42 has proved far from competitive. However Williams said both drivers knew they would face a challenging year.

“All we can ask of both of them is that they’re as committed as they can be to the journey that we’re on at the moment, because we are one a journey and they knew that when both George and Robert started with us this year they knew what they were coming into.

“We didn’t talk to them before the season started and say ‘we think we’re going to do a whole lot better this year and you’re going to be fighting at the top of the midfield’. They knew, so they were mentally prepared for that, and they’ve done everything that we asked them to do and that’s get their heads down to do the best on the the race track they can with the car that they’ve got.”

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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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22 comments on ““Absolutely no difference” between Kubica and Russell’s cars – Williams”

  1. Kubica left the chat

  2. It’s embarrassing that Robert always insinuates that George gets better equipment. Time has passed him by and he constantly overdrives the car in frustration. The cars are so different from his short hay days and he has failed to come to terms with them. Go to another series Robert. You tried.

    1. Gonna open a can of worms. Kubica was never all that good. As far as I remember he was very much a Grosjean. Sometimes brilliant drives out of nowhere. Then basically no one the rest of them. Very inconsistent.

  3. I’m not sure if I have said this before or not but you know what I would love to see now?

    Swap Kubica and Gasly.
    Let’s see if Robert can perform in a high performance car and let’s see if Ghastly Gasly can better Russell.

    1. @nullapax I would hate to see that as every other driver on the grid, and several not, deserve a place in a good car much, much more than Kubica. Kubica has been getting thrashed in a terrible car; jumping into a good car isn’t going to suddenly make him better.

      1. You are absolutely right – a lot of the other guys deserve that seat.
        But it would be interesting to see all the same ;)

    2. Better would be to swap Gasly and Russell.

  4. Like I said before, i doubt Kubica will return after the summer break. Things are not looking good to him already.

    Well he tried, that’s fair, now its the time to step back and go to another series. Well done Robert

    1. I dont think they’ll drop him this year. It’s not like they’re gonna score a point if they have two drivers at Russell’s pace instead of one. He won’t be back next year though as they can get more money from someone better, probably Latifi i guess.

      1. avl0, whilst Williams might not necessarily drop him, and they have dismissed talk of them firing Kubica, it is possible that Kubica might decide to simply walk out of the team in the latter part of this season (i.e. he might choose to quit instead of being pushed out).

        As for a potential replacement, there was a rumour that Ocon was being looked at as a possible alternative, which is coming at a time when Williams are negotiating with Mercedes over renewing their engine contract and possibly considering taking a supply of gearboxes from Mercedes as well. It may be that, rather than going for somebody like Latifi, the alternative option could be that they end up signing a deal with Mercedes for a closer technical partnership in return for giving a seat to Ocon.

  5. Jorge Ravelo
    11th July 2019, 17:16

    The situation at Williams is such a shambles that early in the season after the “illegal” front suspension had to be resigned, Kubica’s car steered itself when braking. That has been corrected, but time takes its toll and a nine year absence is no help. Still, I expect better from Robert, and George can only improve. Only a pay-racer like Laffiti will want a Williams drive.

  6. Actually after the Baku incident, Russel was given Kubica’s old chassis for Spain. While Kubica got a brand new chassis. So Russel actually drove Kubica’s car. You can’t get it more equal than that.

    Beforehand Kubica complained something was wrong with that chassis, but Russel could find no problem with it. Awkward.

  7. georgeboole (@)
    11th July 2019, 21:12

    Well the best argument here is that Williams could not afford having two diferent chassis. End of story.
    I m happy Kubica got a chance to race again, but as I said before, he either can’t understand how to manage the tires or is limited by his injuries

  8. There are many ways to create unequality between team mates and you don’t need to build two different chassises to achieve that. I don’t really know what is the background story here but if one wants to speculate how unequal things could happen… you could say the team could spend more data analysis on russell’s car, the team focuses more on fixing issues which russell finds troublesome, the team could put all new inexperienced team personnel or lower performing people on kubica’s car and put the better people on russell’s car or simply put every new little thing on russell’s car first. Or give russell the best choices with strategy and so forth…

    I doubt any of that is happening in any kind of orchestrated manner but you don’t need to build a worse chassis for kubica to make such things happen. And because russell is so clearly outperforming kubica doing all that would make sense. That being said kubica is also more experienced driver and as such it is also natural and expected he finds more issues and things to improve than russell who is driving his first season in f1. The more experienced a driver is the more issues he has seen and witnessed on f1 race cars and teams over his career and the more solutions to these problems he has also seen. Even if kubica is slower (and he seems to be on merit) he can still notice issues which russell may not even notice. Drivers having weird chassis issues is not new either although I feel it is typically just an excuse to draw attention away from the driver. But at the same time the chassis could have some kind of issues and the team may not be able to find the issue. Or be willing to spend the money to chase an issue they may not even believe is there.

    1. Just look at difference at max speed, difference at acceleration after the turn. If the cars are the same than you are blind.

  9. It’s not like Russell is ‘their’ driver, so makes no sense for Williams to do everything possible to enable him to outperform kubica.

    Maybe Russell really is that good? Because it’s not as if kubica was way off the pace with the Renault tests.

  10. So they got freshly Rokit money and dont need Kubica anymore? Got it.

  11. I am curious why Losica could not compete in another series before getting a chance in F1. He could have went to F2 to see if he is still good or not.

    1. Go to a junior series?

  12. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
    12th July 2019, 8:37

    I wouldn’t usually have this opinion, but given the circumstances of Williams performance (it doesn’t really matter which drivers they use right now and probably next season), and given Robert’s comeback after so long out of the sport with limited testing, personally I would give him this season as development to get used to the cars and tyres. On the proviso there is a steady improvement throughout the season, which I think there has been in the races at least. I think we would see a much better Robert next season after getting to grips with modern F1, particularly the tyres. I think the natural ability is still in there, just a little (a lot) naive to just presume he would jump back in like it was the start of the 2011 season. I think he warrants some patience and understanding. Usually I wouldn’t condone that but under these specific circumstances I think Williams have the time to show that patience and loyalty, or else what was the point taking that chance in the first place.

    1. Publicity, fan support and pay-driver money.

  13. Still happy to give him time. Kub is at best as fast as Rus on a good day, .3 slower on a bad one. His talent and ability is not in question, anyone watching him Rally after his accident would know that.

    Seems there’s just something that he’s not feeling with these modern cars.

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