Williams to consider joining 18-inch tire testing program

George Russell (GBR) Williams Racing FW43B. French Grand Prix, Sunday 20th June 2021. Paul Ricard, France. Credits: Williams F1

Williams Technical Director, François-Xavier Demaison, has said that Williams is seriously considering joining the 18-inch tire testing program to avoid a disadvantage in the future. Ferrari, Alpine, Mercedes, Red Bull, and Alfa Romeo have already tested tires.

Williams did not try the new tires yet, but Demaison would love to do so to have more data for the upcoming season.

“We could but it’s a lot of energy to do it,” he admitted. “But I’m working on it, I would like to do it,” said Demaison regarding the matter. He has also admitted that despite not participating last year, Williams can still be up to speed for 2022 if they participate this season.

“We will have maybe a disadvantage but I have full confidence in our team of engineers,” he said. “We saw in the last races that we can use the tire properly so I can’t see why we would not get there with the 18-inch tire.

He has admitted that Williams may still have a small “handicap” next year, but he has faith in the team. He strongly defended the decision to not build a mule car, a requirement for tire testing.

“For sure we will have a small handicap at the end of next year but we’ll learn. We know this, the decision was made knowing this and when we took the decision not to build a mule car, it was the right decision at that time.”

Demaison had said when he joined that the situation is not what the team wanted, but that ultimately sacrifices were made, mostly for financial reasons. Demaison was part of the new staff from the Dorilton takeover in August 2020.

“There were some decisions made in the past, mostly for financial reasons, and we have to accept this,” he added. “It’s like this, it’s part of the game.”

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