SAO PAULO (AP) – Williams wants to follow Red Bull’s model for success to be able to start winning again in Formula One.
The traditional British team improved this season after years of struggles, moving a step closer to becoming a championship contender for the first time since it thrived in the late 1990s.
To make that final jump back to its glory days, the team is looking to follow on footsteps of Red Bull, which put together a close-knit team that changed very little at its core and was eventually able to win four straight constructors’ and drivers’ championships. “They started off some years back with not the quickest car and certainly not the best operation,” said Rob Smedley, William’s head of vehicle performance.
“And right now, in terms of their chassis, they still have a fantastic chassis, in terms of how they operate, they operate very well – but it’s because the same core group was there for a long time. And that’s what we have to do at Williams.”
Smedley arrived from Ferrari in the beginning of the year and helped in the team’s restructuring.
“We’ve got reasonably sensible people now,” Smedley said on the eve of the Brazilian Grand Prix. “There’s a good level of competence, a good level of young talent as well, which is always important. It’s not just the people at the top end who make all the decisions but the people who actually do the work as well.”
Williams is third in the constructors’ championship with two races left, still with a chance to overcome Red Bull for second.
Williams has finished fourth or worst in the championship every time since 2004. The team won nine constructors’ titles and seven drivers’ championships in the 1980s and 1990, with the last two trophies coming in 1997.
“The team’s got to get back to being able to win, being ready to win, being pretty much ready to beat everybody,” Smedley said.
“For the moment it’s working. There’s more to do. We have to go further but as long we stay on the road that we’re on, hopefully it will work out.”