Formula 1
Formula 1
28 Mar
Event finished
R
Emilia Romagna GP
18 Apr
FP1 in
2 days
R
Portuguese GP
02 May
FP1 in
16 days
09 May
Next event in
22 days
23 May
Race in
39 days
R
Azerbaijan GP
06 Jun
Race in
53 days
13 Jun
Race in
60 days
27 Jun
Race in
74 days
04 Jul
Next event in
78 days
18 Jul
Race in
95 days
R
Hungarian GP
01 Aug
Race in
109 days
29 Aug
Race in
137 days
05 Sep
Race in
144 days
26 Sep
Race in
165 days
R
Singapore GP
03 Oct
Next event in
169 days
10 Oct
Race in
179 days
R
United States GP
24 Oct
Race in
193 days
31 Oct
Race in
200 days
R
Australian GP
21 Nov
Race in
221 days
R
Abu Dhabi GP
12 Dec
Race in
242 days

Symonds says Williams must not let Bottas go to Mercedes

Williams technical chief Pat Symonds says retaining Valtteri Bottas next year is "crucial" for the team, amid speculation linking the Finn with a move to Mercedes.

Symonds says Williams must not let Bottas go to Mercedes
Valtteri Bottas, Williams
Pat Symonds, Williams Chief Technical Officer in the FIA Press Conference
Valtteri Bottas, Williams F1 Team
Valtteri Bottas, Williams
Valtteri Bottas, Williams
Valtteri Bottas, Williams
James Allison, Ferrari Chassis Technical Director

Bottas has emerged as one of the leading candidates to replace world champion Nico Rosberg alongside Lewis Hamilton in 2017 following the German's decision to retire after clinching the title this year.

Williams has hired teenager Lance Stroll to partner Bottas following Felipe Massa's retirement.

Losing Bottas would mean an all-new line-up for the Grove-based team, something Symonds reckons would be far from ideal.

"People often underestimate the importance of continuity in a team," Symonds told Gazzetta dello Sport. "The driver is the final element needed between the engineers and the data.

"You can replace one with another, but you need to have a reference point. This will be especially true in a season in which they change the rules – and we will have Lance Stroll as a rookie with no experience in F1.

"Keeping Bottas will be crucial. Losing him would have a heavy impact on the team."

Ferrari wrong to let Allison go

Symonds also told the Italian newspaper that rival squad Ferrari made a mistake in letting technical director James Allison leave during the 2016 season.

"I believe so. I do not know the internal issues, but I worked many years with James and I have enormous respect for him," Symonds added.

"He is an intellectual, a superb engineer and a team leader who brings people along. I think Ferrari today would be better if there he was still with them."

The Briton reckons Ferrari's new horizontal structure, introduced after Allison left, will not work out.

"This idea does not work, trust me," he added. "McLaren has recently introduced a non-pyramid structure, but in F1 there are engines and technicians who have strong opinions.

"There are people who know how to work in teams, but they also need to then take individual decisions to indicate the direction to follow. Ross Brawn was terrific at that, at the time of Ferrari – as was Rory Byrne, who is still in Maranello. Ferrari can make it, but it must have a strong leader."

Symonds also revealed Ferrari had tried to hire him in the past, the last time two years ago.

"Yes, three times: the first was when [Ross] Brawn went to Ferrari in 1996," he said. "But I was chief engineer at Benetton and I was about to become technical director, so I had no way to move.

"Then in 2012 with Stefano Domenicali and finally, in 2014, when I was already at Williams. But at all times, for different reasons, I always thought it was not the right place for me. "

Additional reporting by Franco Nugnes

shares
comments
Teenagers debuting in F1 gives off "the wrong image" - Villeneuve

Previous article

Teenagers debuting in F1 gives off "the wrong image" - Villeneuve

Next article

F1 2016 review: A tough transitional year for Renault

F1 2016 review: A tough transitional year for Renault
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Valtteri Bottas
Teams Williams
Author Pablo Elizalde
The themes to watch in F1's Imola return Prime

The themes to watch in F1's Imola return

Three weeks is a long time in Formula 1, but in the reshaped start to the 2021 season the teams head to Imola to pick things up after the frenetic Bahrain opener. Here's what to look out for and the developments to follow at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix

The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola Prime

The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola

After a pandemic-hit winter of seat-swapping, F1 kicked off its season with several new faces in town, other drivers adapting to new environments, and one making a much-anticipated comeback. Ben Anderson looks at who made the most of their opportunity and who needs to try harder…

Formula 1
Apr 12, 2021
The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture Prime

The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture

Aston Martin’s only previous foray into Formula 1 in the late 1950s was a short-lived and unsuccessful affair. But it could have been so different, says Nigel Roebuck.

Formula 1
Apr 10, 2021
Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace Prime

Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace

Max Verstappen’s star quality in Formula 1 is clear. Now equipped with a Red Bull car that is, right now, the world title favourite and the experience to support his talent, could 2021 be the Dutchman’s year to topple the dominant force of Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes?

Formula 1
Apr 9, 2021
Is Formula 1 as good as it has ever been now? Prime

Is Formula 1 as good as it has ever been now?

For many, many years Formula 1 has strived to do and to be better on all fronts. With close competition, a growing fanbase, a stable political landscape and rules in place to encourage sustainability, 2021 is on course to provide an unexpected peak

Formula 1
Apr 8, 2021
How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend Prime

How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend

Williams held out against the tide for many years but, as MARK GALLAGHER explains, the age of the owner-manager is long gone

Formula 1
Apr 6, 2021
When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m Prime

When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m

Nikita Mazepin’s Formula 1 debut at the Bahrain Grand Prix lasted mere corners before he wiped himself out in a shunt, but his financial backing affords him a full season. Back in 1993 though, Marco Apicella was an F1 driver for just 800m before a first corner fracas ended his career. Here’s the story of his very short time at motorsport’s pinnacle.

Formula 1
Apr 4, 2021
How Raikkonen's rapid rise stalled his teammate's F1 career climb Prime

How Raikkonen's rapid rise stalled his teammate's F1 career climb

Kimi Raikkonen's emergence as a Formula 1 star in his rookie campaign remains one of the legendary storylines from 2001, but his exploits had an unwanted impact on his Sauber teammate's own prospects. Twenty years on from his first F1 podium at the Brazilian GP, here's how Nick Heidfeld's career was chilled by the Iceman.

Formula 1
Apr 3, 2021