Monaco Grand Prix – Williams Technical Chief Paddy Lowe isn’t ready to write off the 2018 season as the British stalwarts start a recovery programme to help salvage their below-par campaign.
The championship winning team languishes at the bottom of the standings with only a single points finish from Lance Stroll in Azerbaijan.
“The car isn’t good enough, it’s not what it should be,” said Lowe, bluntly, speaking to Formula1.com. “There are some issues with it, which fortunately we think we understand and we’re very busy doing a lot of work to fix those issues.”
With the rest of the teams bringing major or regular smaller updates to the car, Williams have a much bigger task of fixing their issues and getting up to speed with the rest of the grid.
“None of those fixes are in place [now] unfortunately, which is why we were struggling so much at a circuit [Barcelona] which is an unforgiving track for underlying car performance.
“We are not writing off this season. From the minute this car ran, it was clear there were some issues we had to deal with. We haven’t yet brought anything that solves those, so we shouldn’t expect it to be any better. But we will do in due course.”
The updates won’t be coming soon however, and it’s difficult for the inexperienced duo of Stroll and Sergey Sirotkin to help develop the car. Even Robert Kubica has said that there is no quick fix to Williams’ problems.
Despite this, Lowe is hopeful that improvements should be coming by the middle of the season.
“You see the pace is really quite bad. This is because there is something that is really disrupting the drivers’ ability to drive the car anywhere near the limit. There are many things that are good about the car and they are unable to show themselves, because the car is let down particular aspects.”
“We have put in place a programme with the team, which we call a recovery programme, so you bring back the car back to the level we intended to operate,” he said.
“That programme is timed up to the midseason point. I can’t guarantee anything. We just lost our way in some critical areas, which we now understand.”
The Williams Chief is taking full responsibility for the teams’ current situation who have nearly four times as fewer points than at this stage last season.
“We have to accept we haven’t done a good job,” said Lowe. “I haven’t done a good enough job in making the right level of progress. I’ve been with the team 12 months, and there are things which we should have responded to earlier.”