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Current Williams

Discussion in 'Teams' started by FB, Jul 27, 2011.

  1. FB

    FB Not my cup of cake Valued Member

    Williams Grand Prix Engineering

    FIA Entry: AT&T Williams
    Car 11: Rubens Barrichello
    Car 12: Pastor Maldonado
    Engine: Cosworth V8
    Team Principal: Frank Williams
    Director of Engineering: Patrick Head
    Technical Director: Sam Michael
    Race Engineer Car 11: Tony Ross
    Race Engineer Car 12: Tom McCullough

    Stats as of end 2010

    First Entered 1977
    Races Entered 539
    Race Wins 113
    Pole Positions 126
    Fastest Laps 130
    Driver World Championships 7
    Constructor World Championships 9

    Team History

    The Early Years

    Like many team owners and principals Frank Williams started life as a driver and mechanic. Realising his ability as a driver wouldn't allow him to reach the levels he hoped Williams set up Frank Williams Racing Cars and in 1969 entered a Brabham chassis for Piers Courage. Through to 1976 Williams entered customer cars from other manufacturers before settings up Williams Grand Prix Engineering in 1977 with Patrick Head.

    Williams Grand Prix Engineering

    In 1977 Williams GPE entered a March 761 for Patrick Neve. In 1978 Patrick Head designed his first Williams car, the FW06, driven by Australian Alan Jones The car scored it's first points at the South African Grand Prix and Jones took Williams first podium at Long Beach, finishing 2nd behind Carlos Reutemann in a Ferrari.

    In 1979 the FW07 chassis debuted and Williams had grown into a 2 car team with Clay Regazzoni joining Alan Jones. Regazzoni scored Williams first Grand Prix victory at Silverstone and Jones took another 4 victories that season. Continuing with the FW07(in A and B spec) in 1980 Jones, now partnered by Carlos Reutemann, won 6 races (5 for Jones and 1 for Reutemann) with Jones winning the drivers title and Williams the Constructors Championship.

    With the FW07 in C & D spec Williams won 4 more races and again took the Constructors Championship in 1981 but missed out on the Drivers Title. Continuing with Cosworth power in 1982 Williams moved onto the FW08, a car originally designed as 6 wheeler, and Keke Rosberg joined Carlos Reutemann. Reutemann retired 2 races into the season and Mario Andretti stood in for a single race before Derek Daly permanently replaced Reutemann. Rosberg only managed a single win at the Swiss Grand Prix 1982 but it was enough for him to win the Drivers Championship.

    Having driven for Frank Williams back in 1974 and 1975 Jacques Laffite partnered Keke Rosberg in 1983. Rosberg won the Monaco Grand Prix with Cosworth power and by the end of the season Williams had moved to Honda turbo power and the FW09 chassis. 1984 continued the pattern of 1 win per season for Rosberg and the Williams team with Keke taking first place in Dallas.

    The Honda Era

    Nigel Mansell joined Williams in 1985 and the team, still with Honda turbo engines, won 4 Grand Prix. Piquet replaced Rosberg for 1986 and between them Mansell and Piquet won 9 of the 16 races and Williams the Constructors Championship. 1987 saw another 9 victories for the team and another victory in the Constructors Championship as well as Piquet winning the Drivers Title

    The departure of Honda as engine supplier and Piquet as a driver in 1989 saw Williams move temporarily to Judd engines and Mansell, now partnered by Riccardo Patrese, had a very lean season with their highest finish only 4th.

    Renault Power

    Williams secured Renault V10 power for 1989 and the next 9 season proved to be Williams most successful. They won 63 Grands Prix, 5 Constructors Championship (1992, 93, 94, 96 & 97) and 4 Drivers Titles (Mansell 92, Prost 93, Hill 96 and Villeneuve 97). Other winners for Williams in this period of dominance included Riccardo Patrese, Thierry Boutsen, Heinz Harald Frentzen and David Coulthard. This period was also touched by tragedy when Ayrton Senna lost his life in a Williams car at the San Marino Grand Prix at Imola in 1994

    The withdrawal of Renault from F1 in 1998 moved Williams into another barren spell as the cars were powered by ageing Renault engines produced by Mecachrome (98) and Supetec (99).

    BMW Williams

    Williams changed to BMW V10 engines in 2000 and returned to the winners circle in 2001 with Ralf Schumacher and Juan Pablo Montoya at the wheel. The partnership with BMW continued until 2006 with Williams winning 10 Grands Prix and were runners up in the Constructors Championship in 2002 and 2003. Ralph Schumacher drove for Williams for 6 season and was partnered by Alex Zanardi, Jenson Button (debuting in F1 in 2000) and Montoya with Mark Gene and Antonio Pizzonia making occasional appearances as stand in drivers. BMW's final season with Williams saw Mark Webber and Nick Heidfeld taking podiums but able to not challenge for wins.

    Toyota Customer

    A season of Cosworth power in 2006, with Mark Webber joined by F1 new boy Nico Rosberg, proved very unsuccessful and in 2007 Williams became customers of Toyota. As one of the few truly independent teams still competing in F1 Williams struggled to compete with the factory supported teams and were probably best categorised as "the best of the rest". Webber left at the end of 2007 and Rosberg, initially partnered by Alex Wurz and then by Toyota "works" driver Kazuki Nakajima, managed a highest finish of 2nd in Singapore 2008 with Williams finishing 4th, 8th and 7th in the Constructors Championship whilst using Toyota power.

    In 2009 Williams sold a minority share in the company to an Austrian investment company led by Toto Wolff.

    Williams Cosworth

    In 2010 Williams returned to Cosworth engines and signed up Rubens Barrichello and Nico Hulkenberg to drive for them. Hulkenberg took a surprising pole in changeable weather conditions in Brazil to give Williams their first such grid position since Nick Heidfeld in 2005. Although regular points finishers Williams weren't challenging for wins and finished the season 6th in Constructors Championship.

    2011 sees Rubens Barrichello retain his seat at Williams with GP2 Champion Pastor Maldonado alongside him. They will continue with Cosworth engine power.
  2. Honda viewed Frank Williams differently after Frank had his horrible road accident in France during the winter testing prior to the 1986 season.

    The Japs saw a guy in a wheel chair instread of a guy with a sharp mind. Shame.

    I suppose they also didn't like it when Williams let Mansell "race" Piquet in 1986...so, the combination of these two 'things' contributed to Honda leaving Williams at the end of 1987.

    Shame about how the Japs went about it, really.

    I think the move took place at the end of 1987 and Judd came on board for the 1988 season.

    I think. :)
  3. RasputinLives

    RasputinLives Not dead Contributor

    Any chance with combining this thread with the 'Williams slide' thread? some good debate in that one
  4. RossTheBoss

    RossTheBoss Rookie

    I have never been a big fan of Parr, he just seems like a pure moneyman trying to turn a buck. And with the confused logic I fear Williams future may be bleak.

    On a random aside with Sam Michael being Technical Director and Adam Parr being in charge of commercial operations in Williams, is the reason Williams have been sliding down the grid due to Michael wanting to spend x amount of money on a driver or a member of staff and Parr blocking it to protect the bottom line (or words to that effect). Could be completely wrong but I'm curious?
  5. It's because Michael was a race engineer at Jordan and not a car designer. That's why Coughlan is coming on board after his ban.

    Coughlan is a pure car designer - with a measure of success at McLaren - and, in my opinion, that's going to be a big help.
  6. Mr Williams is in a mind-set of 'succession'. They're a corporation now...so Mr Williams has appointed Mr Parr as Chairman so he (FW) can focus on less administrative matters. Makes sense.

    Whether Mr Parr is a "good" Chairman is an entirely different matter.

    Also, there isn't a Grand Prix team like this on the grid at the moment. Williams Grand Prix Engineering used to be a pure thoroughbred F1 racing team only. It's a Corporation now...one that is involved in F1 and side ventures.

    Mr Williams is a lot older and he's deferred certain responsibilities to Mr Parr. It's part of an exit strategy as no one lives forever.

    One such responsibility seems to be that Frank - who's very elloquent and lucid in his verbal output - is willing to let this bloke make an utter fool of himself (to people like us, anyway). Better Parr than himself, eh?
    Galahad likes this.
  7. Galahad

    Galahad Not a Moderator Valued Member

    Sir Williams to you out in the colonies!
    cider_and_toast and Andyoak like this.
  8. teabagyokel

    teabagyokel #dejavu Valued Member

    I believe correct naming procedure would be Mr. Williams or Sir Frank or Sir Frank Williams. Sir Williams is not correct.
    cider_and_toast likes this.
  9. Galahad

    Galahad Not a Moderator Valued Member

    Well, I stand corrected. I do beg your pardon, Sir Ray.
    cider_and_toast likes this.
  10. teabagyokel

    teabagyokel #dejavu Valued Member

    Christ, don't give him one of those, he'll be insufferable.

    I can't disagree with him on this one, however.
    cider_and_toast likes this.
  11. Chad Stewarthill

    Chad Stewarthill Champion Elect Contributor

    One thing that Williams could do to reduce costs, which might also help them attract more sponsors and hence more income, and might even help to get their car going faster, is to get rid of Mr Parr.
  12. :D

    It depends on what Mr Parr is being paid. Perhaps it's worth it for Sir Frank to transfer some of his potential headaches, ulcers and negative stress on to Mr Parr. :snigger:

    Lord only knows just how much discomfort Sir Frank is in with that Pig of a FW33 anyway. He doesn't need any extra bother at his age.

    Are we looking at Williams' worst ever showing? Where did they finish in 2006? Eight or Ninth or something? (It was Cosworth power too, no?)

    Oh well, Coughlan and Renault are on their way...Better times ahead (hopefully!)
  13. UPDATE:

    Williams F1 stock today closed at a new low on the German stock market!

    Euro 16.22

    That's a 35 percent loss in 4 months!

    At least Patrick Head should be happy! :) He monitized a decent piece of his holdings at a sexy price! ;)
  14. Jen

    Jen Here be dragons. Contributor

    Are you a broker Ray? :dunno:
  15. No I am not! Thank goodness too! :)
    jenov2003 likes this.
  16. Chad Stewarthill

    Chad Stewarthill Champion Elect Contributor

    The wrong man fell on his sword. When Parr (allegedly) offered to resign, they shouldn't have let his feet touch the floor on the way out.
    RickD likes this.
  17. I can sympathize with your feelings but, to be perfectly fair to Mr Parr, he didn't design the car. Sam Michael has really no history of designing a car that can win a title*. As I said elsewhere, Michael was a very good race engineer at Jordan Grand Prix...but he didn't really cut the mustard as a great car designer. Hence they hired Mike "SpyGate" Coughlan! ;)

    So, right now, the title holder of 'Chairman' at Williams F1 looks like a thankless job.

    The car's just a piece of shit (probably their worst ever car since they became the Williams we know and love)...the stock is in the middle of crashing...and the light at the end of the tunnel is about 6 months away.

    6 months from now is when Coughlan's new Williams-Renault FW(34?) will hit the winter testing tracks.

    I'm willing to bet it will be an improvement.

    One way to bet would be to buy Williams F1 stock on Xetra (Frankfurt, Germany)...but i'd like it to cheapen a bit more first.

    Right now we're in the middle of a sharp correction in global stock markets...so there's a chance the firm's stock goes down in sympathy. So, 50 percent down from it's IPO might be a good buy.

    Watch this space for a buying opportunity! :)

    Patience is key! ;)


    *The 2003 car may have won a title if Raikkonen or Schumacher had driven it...Sam Michael was there but he didn't design it. Patrick Head was still techincal director and Gavin Fisher was designer, joined by Antonia Terzi from Ferrari.
  18. Where's the 'Williams slide' thread?
  19. UPDATE:

    Williams F1 shares on Xetra/Frankfurt are getting hammered even more this morning!

    The last trade was Euro 15...that's down 1.55 on the day...and down 10 from it's IPO of 25 on March 2nd.

    Worse still is that there are more shares offered below that last trade point level - at 14.70!!! :embarrassed:

    As I said, in my above post in the other thread, we're in the midst of a stock market correction...possibly a crash even.

    Anyway, Williams stock is crashing. [Down 40 percent or more from it's IPO is as close to a 'crash' as you can get without going to implosion!]

    There are two reasons, in my view, of the downward price action:

    1. Williams are expected to get only 9th place 2011 FOM Prize Money;

    2. Global stock markets are worried about a 'double dip' recession in Europe and the US (and Japan (which seems to be in a perpetual state of semi-recession anyway))

    Wait patiently to buy cheap! :)
  20. Cookinflatsix

    Cookinflatsix Banned

    Not many IPO's have gone well this year since March though, look at Glencore down 20% and counting

    Williams are neither a company or in a sector with bright prospects. I think the partial float was just a retirement present for Patrick Head. If they had floated any more it would have sunk even quicker.

    Lets hope the Jaguar deal etc can support the stock until FW finds an exit, but unfortunately this could be the final chapter for Williams.

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