Williams technical director Patrick Head is satisfied that the team is lying second in the Constructors' standings but knows a big step forward is needed to match Ferrari. Ralf Schumacher suffered an unexpected engine failure in Malaysia but Juan...
Williams technical director Patrick Head is satisfied that the team is lying second in the Constructors' standings but knows a big step forward is needed to match Ferrari. Ralf Schumacher suffered an unexpected engine failure in Malaysia but Juan Pablo Montoya finished second, although five seconds behind winner Michael Schumacher.
"Juan Pablo's race was very strong, particularly during the third stint when he reduced Michael's advantage down to about three seconds, and set the fastest lap of the race by a good margin, but still he finished behind his main adversary," said Head.
"On lap 27, Ralf suffered an engine failure, a very unusual occurrence for the BMW engine, and an event which BMW will be working hard to prevent in the future."
In Australia the two Ferraris finished half a minute clear of the third placed Renault of Fernando Alonso, and the Williams duo were resigned to fourth and fifth. While Sepang was obviously an improvement for Williams, at least until Ralf's engine failure, there's still a lot of work to be done.
"On the whole, we were clearly more competitive in the race at Malaysia than at Melbourne," Head commented. "Undoubtedly the Michelin tyres were much more competitive in the hotter temperatures of Malaysia, but Michael in the Ferrari continued to pull away in the points table and we cannot permit that to continue."
"Although we are now a clear second in the Constructors' Championship, our target is to be first and we have to make a significant improvement to achieve that. Ferrari and Bridgestone are clearly the strongest package at present."
Williams is testing at Paul Ricard in France this week, where team testers Antonio Pizzonia and Marc Gen? were on duty yesterday. Pizzonia set the fastest time of the nine drivers on track and Gen? was fourth on the time sheet. Ralf Schumacher is due to join the test today.