Williams have ‘more to do than has been done’ as it rebuilds after takeover

2022 F1 season

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The success Williams enjoyed last season has inspired the team to raise its level in 2022, says its CEO Jost Capito.

However he stressed the team is still in an early stage of rebuilding following its sale to Dorilton in 2020.

Capito took over in charge of the team 12 months ago and appointed new technical director FX Demaison shortly afterwards. By then the team was already well into the development of its new car for 2022, the FW44, which it revealed yesterday.

“I came in February ’21, so it’s just a year, the development of the new car had already started,” Capito explained after the launch. “FX came in April, it was already one-quarter of the new development gone.

“So there could have been adjustments and there were made adjustments. I take full responsibility, of course, for this year’s car and for the team in general.”

The team has benefited from investment by Dorilton, which bought the team in mid-2020 after it ran into financial trouble. “But to bring the team back to where we want to be from where we have been in 2020 is a long way,” Capito cautioned.

“It’s not something you can fix and undo in one year. So there is more to do than [there] has been done.”

Williams has only won one race in the past 17 seasons. However it has more constructors championship titles than any team bar Ferrari, and Capito says he feels the responsibility of living up to the team’s legacy.

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“Coming in, first of all you have a high respect if you come in with Williams this is a team with huge heritage, with huge success in the past, if you come in it’s a great honour. It’s a great pressure as well because to bring Williams back is a pressure.

“I think we have seen mainly we did not a lot of personnel changes. We did some critical changes and what helped a lot is to improve the spirit of the team and give the pride back to the team. It’s not the feeling we are in Formula 1 and that’s where we want to be, it’s we are in Formula 1 and we want to move.”

The team ended a three-year run of last-placed finishes in the constructors championship last year by rising to eighth place. Capito said Williams “don’t accept any more to be last” after 2021. “We want to move up the grid and we work hard to do that.

“We need the spirit and we need to enjoy that journey, I think that was the main thing. Then fighting for points and getting in the position that we got some times, the icing on the cake, the podium in Spa, boosted not just the team on the race track but boosted the whole company.”

He believes the team is now on a better footing to continue making gains over the coming seasons. “We developed processes, we developed different structures, we improved the communication with the company so we developed OKRs [objectives and key results] for this year. We developed our values for the company and the behaviours we want to have in the company.

“So I think we came very much from a family business to a well-structured engineering company.”

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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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4 comments on “Williams have ‘more to do than has been done’ as it rebuilds after takeover”

  1. Capito can provide much better focus and steer Williams in the good direction, he is doing really well with the tools that were given to him. The truth is that Claire wasn’t fit for the role. With Jost I can see the pieces falling into place to get Williams back to upper mid field in short term. They need now to have a long term investment plan on upgrading their facilities and look for strengthening their driving line up for the future. Latifi is improving and is a good balance of funds and dependable driver, not brilliant, but more consistent than a Stroll for example. Albon is an exciting driver, but is his last shot, so he needs to grab it and over deliver whenever possible. His experience at Red Bull can help Williams on race weekends approach. The risk they have now is up to this years car design. I hope they got it right. If they keep improving there’s a chance for them to do “a McLaren” and get more sponsors back for the long term.

    1. Coventry Climax
      16th February 2022, 23:25

      The truth is that it is not up to you to say whether Ms. Williams was fit for the role or not. You have no idea what the toolset was that she had to work with, and under which circumstances. There was also still a father with quite a say in the matter, you know.
      It might just as well be that Mr. Capito, when given the exact same toolset that she was given at the time, would not have done a better job, there’s no way of telling.
      I wish Williams all the luck and success in the world and it feels like you have a warm spot for them as well. Certainly that did not just come from their success years? They must have done something right, even in your eyes, and even if it didn’t bring them massive success, over the last years.

  2. The pic at the head of the article is the only one I have seen of the car at speed in the wet.
    The wheel covers and the deflectors over the front tyres seem to keep a clear forward view for the driver.
    It would be nice to see a side shot to get some visual of the air flow around and over the car.
    What is concerning … it looks like the spray behind the car is more opaque than what I recall from previous years. Could be the picture or the camera lens in use.
    If this is the case, it will not bode well for future rain events.

    1. Coventry Climax
      16th February 2022, 23:33

      @rekibsn, How could the vision in front be obscured if there is nothing there that kicks up the water? It has little or nothing to do with the wheelcovers or deflectors.
      As for the vision at the back, that was a concern months ago already. Nothing new there.
      Lastly, I would hope Williams are smart enough not to share pictures that give away the airflow over their car.

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