Claire Williams has admitted the sale of her family’s F1 team “feels like grieving” – but wishes the new owners all the best.
Williams, deputy team principal to her father Sir Frank, left the team after the Italian Grand Prix following the purchase by American investment company Dorilton Capital.
Now coming to terms with exiting the Formula 1 paddock, Williams is having to adapt to the sudden change in lifestyle as she steps back from what can be an all-consuming world.
“We are very happy the new owners believe so strongly in the heritage of this team and respect the name,” said Williams in an interview on the official F1 website.
“It’s a reason why we chose them to be the new owners, they are going to continue that – the team will carry the Williams name going forward into the future and that’s wonderful.
“But I think for us, we probably need a little time to get over this. It feels like grieving for us.
“I’m sure there will be a time when we do turn on the TV on a Sunday afternoon and watch it because that’s what we’ve done for the past 44 years, but all we’ll be doing is wishing this team well.
“All the people in the team deserve to have success – and we hope that comes for them in the very near future.”
Williams is convinced Dorilton are the right people to turn around the fortunes of a team that have been racing towards the back of the pack for the last few years.
“They are certainly passionate about the team,” she added. “They certainly have the financial firepower the team needs in order to take it back to the front of the grid, and as a family, that’s all we want for our team.
“I feel we have protected our people, protected our name in F1 and this is the right decision for us.
“We go out maybe not having had the best few years in the sport, but those few years certainly shouldn’t define us.
“We’ve won 16 World Championships, we’ve made seven drivers World Champion, we have won more than a tenth of all grands prix ever staged in the course of this sport’s history and that really is a wonderful legacy to leave behind and one we will always be incredibly proud of.”