SPA, Belgium, August 22nd, 2013 (F1plus/G. Keilloh).- The 2013 season has been a disappointing one so far for the Williams team. After a 2012 campaign in which it ended its long win drought and was a regular contender in the top ten, in 2013 the team took until the Hungarian race to score its first solitary point.
Recently the team has made changes to its senior technical staff, no doubt in part due to this disappointing set of results, with previous Technical Director Mike Coughlan leaving the team and the hugely experienced Pat Symonds – who has won multiple world championships at Benetton and Renault – starting work at the Grove team during the summer break.
At Spa, Williams drivers Pastor Maldonado and Valtteri Bottas were both positive about Pat Symonds’ arrival, as well as impressed by what they had seen from him so far.
Maldonado said: “Pat is a very experienced guy, I’ve been talking to him this week and it’s quite early to say something about him, but he looks very professional, very involved already with the team…he’s not completely lost (saying) ‘I’m new in this place’, he knows very well what to do…he’s a very open guy…We are really looking forward not only to improve some place of the team or factory, we need to improve everything together and to work more as a real team”.
Maldonado insisted to that such was the car’s under-performance this year that change, and new input, is welcome: “It (change) doesn’t affect anything, especially when the car is not very competitive, it’s quite difficult to affect (negatively) the performance we have, nearly impossible. Everyone that can help us is welcome.
“I really prefer a winning guy, this is my point of view…I don’t have any preference in terms of set-up, if the car is a winner car I drive it, if people are winning people (then) I love them!” When asked if Symonds is a winner Maldonado replied “I think so.”
Maldonado’s teammate Valtteri Bottas was similarly positive about Symonds arrival.
“I met him immediately on Monday when he started, I can really tell he’s got a lot of experience and obviously (has) a lot of success in the past.
“He’s not afraid to make changes to how the team works because there need to be changes, we need to do better. I’m really looking forward to what we’ll do to our departments, because we really need some new opinions and new ideas, so that’s what he’s going to bring.” The Finnish driver said.