Williams explain why only Alex Albon will have their Canadian GP upgrades

Michelle Foster
The race number of Alex Albon on the Williams FW45. February 2023.

The #23 of Alex Albon emblazoned on the launch version of the Williams FW45. February 2023.

Williams will have a new package for the FW45 at the Canadian Grand Prix but it will only be fitted to Alex Albon’s car.

Williams have once again found themselves lodged at the very bottom of the log with the team having scored just a single point in the first seven races of the season, Albon P10 in Bahrain.

But while the team has insisted this season’s FW45 is a step forward with Albon going as far as to say after Bahrain that the team is “second” only to Aston Martin in terms of the step done, he admits they’re now needing upgrades.

“We can’t really get too much better because we don’t have upgrades,” he said after Spain. “We can do so much with the set-up of the car and improve it that way but we’ve got to wait for that [updates] to happen.”

The team is set to bring updates for the car to Montreal but the new parts will only feature on Albon’s car.

Dave Robson, Williams’ head of vehicle performance, said: “The track in Montreal should play slightly more to the strengths of the FW45 than Monaco and Barcelona did.

“Furthermore, we have several upgraded components available this week, which will run on Alex’s car only.

“We expect to be more competitive, but we will take our time on Friday to understand if the new package is delivering as expected.”

The team will take the opportunity to run comparison tests as rookie driver Logan Sargeant will still be using an older-specification car.

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“Alongside the work to understand the upgrades,” Robson continued, “we will look at the usual tyre work on Friday as well as understanding how the track surface has weathered in the last 12 months.

“Overtaking is easier in Montreal than it was at the last two races, which may open up some additional strategy options during the Grand Prix, if the tyre degradation can be managed.”

Albon is feeling hopeful as he reckons the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve should suit the car.

“Heading into Canada,” he said, “it’s always a bit of a tricky circuit, however with it having more medium downforce, it should suit us a bit more than the last couple of tracks.

“We have an upgrade coming for this weekend, so it should be interesting to see how it performs.

“Everyone at the factory has done a huge job to get this upgrade ready for the weekend, so hopefully we can have a good result.”