2005 was a difficult year for Williams but the team launches into the 2006 season ready to fight back. The new FW28 was presented at Williams' base in the UK on January 27th and team principal Frank Williams has set his sights on finishing in the...
2005 was a difficult year for Williams but the team launches into the 2006 season ready to fight back. The new FW28 was presented at Williams' base in the UK on January 27th and team principal Frank Williams has set his sights on finishing in the top three constructors this year.
Even without the backing of a manufacturer, as Williams previously had with BMW, the boss believes they have the strengths to challenge the front runners. "Our realistic thinking is that if we get in the top three in the constructors' championship we will have done a good job," Williams said at the launch.
"We tend to be more impressed with brain power than budget power. Not having a manufacturer is a disadvantage. You can just get more done and more quickly by means of having more people and spending more money."
"But there is still room for being nimble and agile, being able to recognise problems ahead of other people, and maybe that is what we can demonstrate we can do."
Director of engineering, and team co-owner, Patrick Head acknowledged that it is difficult to accurately judge the performance before the new car has been on the test tack and was not ready to make any predictions.
"Obviously you don't design a car saying 'I'm designing this car to finish third', you design a car to win," he commented. "But it's only when we get out running that we will see exactly whether we have achieved in all areas what we intended. But I'm optimistic about the 2006 season."
On the subject of drivers Mark Webber and Nico Rosberg, Head is convinced of their potential -- providing the FW28 is up to the job of competing at the front of the field. "If the car is good enough he can win, no doubt about it," he said of Webber.
He believes youngster Rosberg can outdo Jenson Button's rookie season with Williams. "I think it depends enormously on how good the car is and whether we are reliable," he remarked. "But Jenson scored 12 points in his first season and I would hope Nico would be well ahead of that."