Williams expect to match McLaren’s revival

Date published: March 7 2021 - Jon Wilde

Lando Norris, McLaren, and George Russell, Williams

Jost Capito, Williams’ new CEO, believes there is every reason to think his team can enjoy an F1 revival similar to McLaren’s over the last couple of years.

The two British teams were at the peak of the sport in the 1980 and 1990s, winning all but four of the constructors’ World Championship titles between them during those two decades.

But as Ferrari, Red Bull and Mercedes have enjoyed periods of dominance since then, Williams and McLaren have endured leaner times with both spending seasons racing towards the rear of the pack.

McLaren, however, are having a renaissance, working their way up to finish third in the World Championship last year and with grand plans to go even further up the order now they have reunited with Mercedes for their engines.

For Williams, it will take longer to make such strides. They are also powered by Mercedes but are starting from a very low base having finished last with seven, one and zero points respectively in the previous three campaigns.

However, with new owners Dorilton Capital giving Williams a new lease of life due to their investment, Capito, who was brought in as CEO this winter, believes the team can follow McLaren back up towards the front.

Jost Capito, Williams

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“My goals? They are very clear,” Capito, who had a short spell with McLaren in 2016, told the Dutch edition of Motorsport.com.

“In the short term, we have to fight hard on the track and try to make the most of every opportunity. But looking at the slightly longer term, we want Williams to win races again.

“McLaren have done a fantastic job over the years. My idea about this is clear – there is no reason whatsoever why we should not be able to do the same. We have all the ingredients to do exactly the same.

“It is very difficult to put a time stamp of two, three or four years on it, but I am convinced we can achieve at least the same as McLaren.”

Driver George Russell, who is about to start his third season with Williams, thinks the big regulation changes next year offer Williams the best chance of progress.

“Williams have finished last in the Championship in the past three seasons but that won’t happen in 2022, at least that’s my expectation,” said the Briton.

“Certainly that’s how it looks with the investments of Dorilton and all the changes I’ve seen.

“I see a bright future here. Every team in Formula 1 will have a great opportunity in 2022. With the investments in this team, new acquisitions such as Jost and closer ties with Mercedes, things look very promising for Williams.”

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