Williams Chief Technical Officer Paddy Lowe has finally broken his silence amid the crisis that has engulfed his team as they delayed getting their season going until 3pm today when George Russell finally drove out the pitlane for an afternoon shakedown and system check on the FW42.
Lowe oversaw last year’s FW41 disaster and this year his reputation has taken a further knock as the faltered ahead of the season, denying their two new drivers – Robert Kubica and rookie George Russell much-needed track time
In the team report, Lowe is quoted, “It’s very disappointing to miss two days of this first test in Barcelona, but we are very happy today that we got the car out for the afternoon session.”
“We’re late but not for the lack of incredible effort from the whole team both in the factory and here in the garage. We spent the afternoon doing a number of systems checks and various data gathering programmes without any significant reliability issues, so we are happy with that as a first look at the FW42.”
“This puts us in good shape to get down to some more significant programmes starting tomorrow morning. We have missed a lot of time, but we are looking forward at this stage and we will make the very best use of the five days remaining of winter testing.”
“Thank you to all the staff for their teamwork and dedication in getting this car out today,” added Lowe.
Russell spoke of his first run in the new car, “It was amazing to finally drive the FW42. Today we focused purely on install laps, shaking the car down and data gathering.”
“Our focus was not on performance runs so I can’t judge the overall potential of the car, but I’m excited that we will get a full day of running tomorrow,” added the reigning Formula 2 Champion.
Lowe’s absence forced Claire Williams into the media frontline to which she said of the technical chief, “I’ve been reading a lot of speculation about Paddy’s position. Right now all I’m focused on, all the team should be focused on, is the car and making sure the car is in the right place.”