Williams F1 team's frustration over poor grand prix pitstops rising

Rob Smedley has admitted to growing frustration over the ongoing pitstop problems in grands prix that continue to blight the Williams Formula 1 team

Williams F1 team's frustration over poor grand prix pitstops rising

Williams has encountered numerous difficulties with its pitstops this season, the most high-profile being during the Belgian Grand Prix when a medium tyre was incorrectly fitted to the right-rear wheel of Valtteri Bottas's car among a set of softs.

Head of vehicle performance Smedley has conceded the team was again slow with its stops in Japan, where Bottas lost fourth place to Kimi Raikkonen's Ferrari in the final pit sequence.

"We're making some inroads," said Smedley, with regard to the pitstop situation.

"We had slow pitstops for other reasons [in Japan] and part of that definitely helped Kimi to get in front of Valtteri as well.

"We probably just weren't quick enough to react to get that final set of tyres on and keep him behind. Very disappointing.

"It is something we need to address. We can't just erase it like that. It is something we do need to improve.

"We have a fairly regular occurrence of one issue, which is the wheel nuts have been a little bit tight to take off.

"But then in Japan we had other things which were thrown at us as well.

"So as usual, there's a tsunami of work to do after every race, it's just this has been a slightly bigger tsunami."

The only saving grace for Smedley was Bottas at least took 10 points at Suzuka, while nearest constructors' championship rival Red Bull suffered on that circuit, failing to score at all.

It means with five rounds of the championship to run, starting with the Russian Grand Prix on October 11, Williams has a 69-point cushion over Red Bull in the battle for third.

"From a race like that, it [outscoring Red Bull] was definitely the primary thing we needed to try and do, so I was quite happy we managed to gain 10 points on them," said Smedley.

"It was a positive, but not enough of a positive - they didn't score anything - and it was a race where we should have had maybe 18 or 20 points on them, not just 10."

shares
comments
Niki Lauda fears Singapore GP repeat for Mercedes in Russian GP
Previous article

Niki Lauda fears Singapore GP repeat for Mercedes in Russian GP

Next article

Are F1 personnel over-privileged?

Are F1 personnel over-privileged?
Load comments
The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push Plus

The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push

As the driver of Formula 1’s medical car, Alan van der Merwe’s job is to wait – and hope his skills aren’t needed. JAMES NEWBOLD hears from F1’s lesser-known stalwarts

Formula 1
Jan 15, 2022
When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push Plus

When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push

There was an ace up the sleeve during the 1983 F1 title-winning season of Nelson Piquet and Brabham. It made a frontrunning car invincible for the last three races to see off Renault's Alain Prost and secure the combination's second world title in three years

Formula 1
Jan 13, 2022
How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner Plus

How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner

Brabham’s first world championship race-winning car was held back by unreliable Climax engines – or so its creators believed, as STUART CODLING explains

Formula 1
Jan 10, 2022
The steps Norris took to reach a new level in F1 2021 Plus

The steps Norris took to reach a new level in F1 2021

Lando Norris came of age as a grand prix driver in 2021. McLaren’s young ace is no longer an apprentice or a quietly capable number two – he’s proved himself a potential winner in the top flight and, as STUART CODLING finds out, he’s ready to stake his claim to greatness…

Formula 1
Jan 9, 2022
The original F1 maestro who set the bar for Schumacher and Hamilton Plus

The original F1 maestro who set the bar for Schumacher and Hamilton

Juan Manuel Fangio, peerless on track and charming off it, established the gold standard of grand prix greatness. NIGEL ROEBUCK recalls a remarkable champion

Formula 1
Jan 8, 2022
How Russell sees his place in the Mercedes-Hamilton F1 superteam Plus

How Russell sees his place in the Mercedes-Hamilton F1 superteam

George Russell joining Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes this year gives it arguably the best line-up in Formula 1 – if it can avoid too many fireworks. After serving his apprenticeship at Williams, Russell is the man that Mercedes team believes can lead it in the post-Hamilton era, but how will he fare against the seven-time champion? Autosport heard from the man himself

Formula 1
Jan 6, 2022
How F1 pulled off its second pandemic season and its 2022 implications Plus

How F1 pulled off its second pandemic season and its 2022 implications

OPINION: The Formula 1 season just gone was the second to be completed under the dreaded shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic, but in many ways it was much more ‘normal’ than 2020. Here’s the story of how the championship’s various organisers delivered a second challenging campaign, which offers a glimpse at what may be different next time around

Formula 1
Jan 5, 2022
The adapt or die mentality that will shape F1's future Plus

The adapt or die mentality that will shape F1's future

As attitudes towards the motor car and what powers it change, Formula 1 must adapt its offering. MARK GALLAGHER ponders the end of fossil fuels

Formula 1
Jan 3, 2022