Williams happy with performance of team and drivers at British GP
By Berthold Bouman
Although Pastor Maldonado finished 16th at Silverstone last weekend as a result of his clash with Sauber’s Sergio Perez, Williams is happy with the overall performance of team and drivers, said Mark Gillan, Chief Operations Engineer.
“In general we were reasonably happy with the pace of the car and both drivers drove well in qualifying,” said Gillan. “We had good race starts and Bruno [Senna] did a very good job finishing in 9th, despite a spin during the first stint.”
But wasn’t Williams hoping for the same kind of performance as in Barcelona, when Maldonado won the race? “The conditions were clearly quite different to those experienced in Barcelona, but the tyres performed well and we had no surprising tyre characteristics,” Gillan replied.
Senna finished ninth, but has never qualified for Q3 the whole season, what can Williams do to improve his qualifying performance? “We continue to work with Bruno in the simulator and with the race programme to help him optimise his qualifying pace and I think that he can take a lot of positives from Silverstone into Hockenheim. He was unlucky not to progress into the final qualifying session when his hot timed lap was severely compromised by the yellow flag,” said Gillan.
Asked about Maldonado’s crash Gillan commented, “Pastor was looking good for some decent points but unfortunately lost the car on braking on lap 12 and hit Perez, which ultimately hindered Pastor’s race. The stewards made their decision and Pastor received a reprimand and a fine which we have accepted.”
Indeed, it ‘hindered’ Maldonado’s race, not to mention the fact Perez could forget about his race altogether, hence the 10,000 Euro fine and the official reprimand from the FIA Stewards. The reprimand is of course also an indication that next time Maldonado will not get off lightly, but could face a start grid penalty again, or worse, be disqualified from the race.