Formula 1
Formula 1
R
Emilia Romagna GP
18 Apr
Race in
46 days
09 May
Next event in
64 days
23 May
Race in
81 days
R
Azerbaijan GP
06 Jun
Race in
95 days
13 Jun
Race in
103 days
27 Jun
Race in
116 days
04 Jul
Next event in
120 days
18 Jul
Race in
137 days
R
Hungarian GP
01 Aug
Race in
151 days
29 Aug
Race in
179 days
05 Sep
Race in
186 days
12 Sep
Race in
193 days
26 Sep
Race in
207 days
R
Singapore GP
03 Oct
Next event in
211 days
10 Oct
Race in
221 days
R
United States GP
24 Oct
Race in
236 days
31 Oct
Race in
243 days
R
Australian GP
21 Nov
Race in
263 days
R
Saudi Arabia GP
05 Dec
Race in
278 days
R
Abu Dhabi GP
12 Dec
Race in
284 days

Wurz explains root cause of Williams “crisis”

Williams’s current “crisis” is caused by an aerodynamic stall that is giving its drivers “no confidence” in the car, says team consultant and ex-Formula 1 driver Alex Wurz. 

Wurz explains root cause of Williams “crisis”
Lance Stroll, Williams FW41
Lance Stroll, Williams FW41, spins into the gravel
Lance Stroll, Williams Racing, is escorted by a marshal from his wrecked car
Sergey Sirotkin, Williams Racing
Sergey Sirotkin, Williams FW41 and Romain Grosjean, Haas F1 Team VF-18
Lance Stroll, Williams FW41
Sergey Sirotkin, Williams
Lance Stroll, Williams FW41, crashes
Lance Stroll, Williams Racing
Sergey Sirotkin, Williams FW41

Lance Stroll and Sergey Sirotkin were the two slowest drivers in qualifying for the Spanish Grand Prix, which continues a miserable start to the season for Williams. 

Stroll scored the team’s first points of the year in the last race in Azerbaijan, aided by the unique demands of that circuit, but the car's fundamental problem remains.

"We lose downforce at the diffuser, at the floor,” Wurz told ORF, Austria’s national broadcaster. “We had this problem a little bit last year, but it was only annoying. Now it's basically a stall.

“We lose so much grip, and then the driver has no confidence in the car at all. That's our problem. Identifying the problem is only 10%. To correct and implement this is in fact the difficult task."

Wurz said one positive was that the exaggerated problems made it clear there was a fundamental issue, meaning the team would avoid having different departments point fingers at each other.

He thinks the cause “must be a mistake somewhere in the software and in the simulation” and said poor correlation had been a problem for Williams for some time.

“This has been missing here since 2015, but only in small segments and small steps,” he said. “It is very good for the team that we are so extremely aware of this, that the lap times are falling so catastrophically, that everyone is pulling in the same direction. 

“This crisis is an opportunity for us all to get to the same denominator and to have a culture in the team, for us all to be open with each other so that we can move forward. This is a chance for the team to build a healthy foundation."

Wurz said Williams did not need to “write off” its season, but fears a significant fix is still several races away.

“A lot is happening to create new forms of aerodynamics,” he said. “We decided to do this in Melbourne, but we will probably bring this to the car just before the summer break."

Sirotkin, who outqualified Stroll at Barcelona but will start behind him because of a grid penalty, is adamant he will not use the race as a test.

“It is still a race and we don’t want to take it as kind of easy one to the flag, it is still a fight,” he said. 

“Now it is more like a fight with yourself, rather than with other cars. I will try to be as racy as I can.”

Additional reporting by Sven Haidinger

shares
comments
Vettel: Formula 1's aero rules flip-flopping is "comical"

Previous article

Vettel: Formula 1's aero rules flip-flopping is "comical"

Next article

Crash pushes Hartley on brink of engine penalties

Crash pushes Hartley on brink of engine penalties
Load comments
Can Mercedes' W12 retain the team's crown? Prime

Can Mercedes' W12 retain the team's crown?

Replacing Formula 1's fastest car was never going to be an easy feat for Mercedes. Amid the technical rule tweaks to peg back the W12 and its 2021 rivals, the new Mercedes challenger will remain the target to beat

The pointed note that starts Ferrari's Leclerc vs Sainz era Prime

The pointed note that starts Ferrari's Leclerc vs Sainz era

Ferrari is starting its post-Sebastian Vettel age by welcoming Carlos Sainz in alongside Charles Leclerc. But while Sainz has a tough challenge to match his new teammate, Ferrari is also sending a message that previous intra-team spats must end

The mantra Ocon must follow to challenge Alonso at Alpine Prime

The mantra Ocon must follow to challenge Alonso at Alpine

OPINION: It's been an uneasy ride for Esteban Ocon since his F1 comeback - and fresh challenges lie in wait as he's joined by double world champion Fernando Alonso in the newly rebranded Alpine team. STUART CODLING sets out a roadmap to success…

Why Haas is willing to sacrifice its 2021 F1 season Prime

Why Haas is willing to sacrifice its 2021 F1 season

Every Formula 1 team is facing the same difficult decision this season: how do you split precious aero development time between the current car and the all-new 2022 project?

The big questions of F1 2021 - Karun Chandhok Prime

The big questions of F1 2021 - Karun Chandhok

After an unprecedented season last year, there are plenty of questions and storylines for the upcoming Formula 1 campaign. Sky Sports F1 pundit Karun Chandhok gives his verdict.

Formula 1
Mar 1, 2021
How McLaren F1’s new investors have already made an impact Prime

How McLaren F1’s new investors have already made an impact

The deal McLaren concluded with MSP Sports Capital last year which will help the cash-strapped Formula 1 team pay for much-needed infrastructure upgrades, also points toward the future for F1 itself, says GP Racing's Stuart Codling.

Formula 1
Feb 27, 2021
Why Verstappen isn't interested in the hype game Prime

Why Verstappen isn't interested in the hype game

In a pre-season where Red Bull has been unusually quiet, Max Verstappen has also been guarded about the team's fortunes in 2021. Even after trying the RB16B for the first time at Silverstone, the Dutchman was careful to manage expectations

Formula 1
Feb 26, 2021
The pros and cons of F1's 2021 rule changes Prime

The pros and cons of F1's 2021 rule changes

In the strategy for grand prix racing's future, 2021 represents a significant step towards the goal of closer racing and a more level playing field. That's the theory behind the latest raft of changes, but will they have the desired effect?

Formula 1
Feb 24, 2021