Williams targets Bahrain debut for new nose

Williams is hoping that its final 2016 nose will be ready for the Bahrain Grand Prix, with it not yet having passed its mandatory Formula 1 crash tests.

Williams targets Bahrain debut for new nose
Felipe Massa, Williams FW38
Felipe Massa, Williams FW38
Felipe Massa, Williams FW38
Felipe Massa, Williams FW38
Pat Symonds, Williams F1 Team, Chief Technical Officer
Felipe Massa, Williams F1 Team
Valtteri Bottas, Williams Martini Racing FW38
Valtteri Bottas, Williams Martini Racing FW38

The Grove-based outfit set the trend for shorter noses last year, and is well-aware of how tough it can be to ensure the smaller structure is strong enough to withstand the demands laid down by the FIA.

Although many teams have copied its lead, Williams is determined to go even more extreme and make the nose shorter, which will help maximise air flow under the car.

There had been some hope that the nose would have been ready either for testing or the season-opener in Melbourne, but that has now been ruled out with the team admitting that the crash test had not yet been completed.

Deputy team principal Claire Williams has said, however, that the current schedule is for it to be introduced in time for the second race of the season.

“We are running a shorter nose at the moment and we have an ever shorter one coming for Bahrain, I think it is,” she said.

Time lag

Williams technical chief Pat Symonds said once the nose had passed the crash test, then there was not much time needed to get it in to action – as long as the outfit did then wish to also change the front wing.

“The nose itself isn't generally the problem, it depends what you are doing with the front wing,” he explained. “The front wing takes a lot more time to produce than the nose.

“But with everyone now trying to get down to these 850mm noses, just getting through the crash test is really, really difficult.

“Last year I thought we would see people coming down towards this quite quickly, and we saw how difficult it was for people to get there. And some got nowhere near it.

“This year people have got it a little bit closer but it is not easy.”

He added: “I guess that if you are making your wings in parallel or not changing your front wing, if it is purely about your nose, you can probably get it from crash test to car in a couple of weeks.

“If you are doing a new front wing, and doing that only after your crash test, then it is a lot longer than that.”

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About this article

Series Formula 1
Event Bahrain GP
Location Bahrain International Circuit
Teams Williams
Author Jonathan Noble
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