Nicholas Latifi, Williams, Bahrain International Circuit, 2022

Williams will give Latifi extra runs to make up for time lost due to fire

2022 F1 season

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Williams have revised their run plan for today to allow Nicholas Latifi the opportunity to make up some of the time he lost yesterday.

Latifi was due to spend the entire day in the car yesterday but missed the majority of the test after suffering a rear brake fire. It caused significant damage to the FW44 and ending their day’s running after just two hours.

The driver is back in the car this morning and was due to hand over to team mate Alexander Albon after the lunch break. However Williams CEO Jost Capito confirmed Latifi’s running will be extended into the afternoon.

“He will get the afternoon and in between just after lunch,” said Capito. “Alex will get like a qualifying session, because he hasn’t done that, so then they’ll end up about the same number of laps.”

Contrary to reports elsewhere, Williams is not being given extra time to run their car, as Haas were permitted to do following the freight problem which delayed their start to testing.

Capito said he is concerned the time lost due to the fire could impact their performance during the opening rounds of the 2022 season. The team identified its cause, which he indicated was the result of a procedural error rather than a mechanical fault.

“I think it’s 95% clear what it was,” said Capito about the cause of the fire.

“Let’s say it was a process that is a bit too complicated and that led to a mistake. So very small, but had quite a big effect. It’s too stupid to talk about it.”

While the team have fixed the damage and been able to get the car back out for the final day of testing on Saturday, Capito fears that the loss of tyre testing time due to the fire could affect the team’s performance during the early phase of the season.

“Because we didn’t do the tyre test at the end of last year, that hurts us quite a lot,” Capito explained. “I think it will have an impact on the performance of the first races, having lost one sixth of the testing.

“It’s quite a lot to do and today we’ll try to get lots of data. There’s five different tyre compounds you have to go through and get all the data for that. And that’s quite tricky as we didn’t have any information about the tyres and the wheels before. I am sure it’s quite a disadvantage and I think it comes out that it has been a disadvantage.”

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Author information

Will Wood
Will has been a RaceFans contributor since 2012 during which time he has covered F1 test sessions, launch events and interviewed drivers. He mainly...
Claire Cottingham
Claire has worked in motorsport for much of her career, covering a broad mix of championships including Formula One, Formula E, the BTCC, British...

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2 comments on “Williams will give Latifi extra runs to make up for time lost due to fire”

  1. Does anyone know if Latifi race engineer from the last race, is still with Williams. Given the part he played in the crash, I’d be very surpised if he remains at Williams in that role.

    1. Are you suggesting that Latifi was instructed to crash?

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