Former Williams’ technical chief officer Paddy Lowe revealed being pleased that the Williams family managed to sell the team to Dorilton Capital, last year, as he thinks they should have done it way earlier.
Williams was founded in 1977 by Frank Williams and has won since then 9 Constructors’ Championships and 7 Drivers’ Championships. In 2020, after being managed by the Williams family for more than 4 decades, the team was sold to Dorilton Capital in order to be financially assisted and come back to where it belongs: the top of the ranking.
The Grove-based team is, therefore, one of the most successful teams in F1 history. What makes their legacy even more special is the fact that Williams is a private team that miraculously managed to survive over the years in a world without pity such as F1. No other private team has ever managed to have such a successful history.
This success was mostly made possible by great management under the direction of Frank Williams and a few engineering miracles. These were generated by incredible talents such as Paddy Lowe or the very famous Adrian Newey, who worked for the British team during the Williams-Renault era, which is also Williams’ most successful period (1991 to 1997).
Nonetheless, in the past few years, something was missing and the team kept encountering bad results since 2018. Williams’ former technical chief officer Paddy Lowe, who left the team at the beginning of the 2019 season, revealed his opinion on the deal concluded between Dorilton Capital and the Williams family.
Lowe suggested that they should have sold their team way earlier when they could start to guess bad results to come. In 2014 for example, when they had the best engine and could keep up with good results but at the same time, knew they were starting to encounter major issues on the development of their single-seaters.
The 59-year-old, therefore, says himself happy that a deal was concluded last year, and that new income will be injected into the team while they will still compete under the Williams name.
“Williams had the benefit of the best engine by a long chalk from 2014, so that gave some, let’s say, false impressions of underlying performance,” Lowe said.
“They were living off a number of other legacy advantages that gradually unwind. When the organization starts to lose its way because it hasn’t had the right investment or made the right decisions, it doesn’t instantly make bad cars.”
“The team has been in a very negative spiral from a funding point of view. While I was there, I was watching that spiral progress further down the drain, and it’s actually quite distressing.”
“You understand that there’s no good endpoint apart from a sale. So you may as well cut that now and move on before it’s all gone.”
“I’m very happy that the team was sold for a reasonable price so that Claire and her brothers leave with something to work with from the great things the family has achieved over the years, and the name is kept.”
“They’ve got new investors who will have the cash to take it forward and turn that spiral in the other direction, which will be a long process.”
“That’s what they’ve needed to do for a long time, and to be honest, should have done it earlier, for all sorts of reasons which are not to do with any individuals.”