Williams switch chassis between Kubica, Russell

Mark Scott
Williams to be compensated for the incident in Baku.

Williams to be compensated for the incident in Baku.

George Russell has Robert Kubica’s Williams chassis and vice versa as the team continue to feel the effect of the drain cover crash in Baku.

After Russell’s car was wrecked by a loose manhole cover in FP1 ahead of the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, he has now switched to the chassis that Kubica had been using in the first four races of the season.

Kubica now has Russell’s Baku-spec chassis, with both repaired after the Pole also suffered big damage following a crash in Q1 in Baku.

“I’m in Robert’s chassis this weekend, there was a new chassis Robert was getting, which was always the plan,” Russell told reporters in the paddock following FP2 in Spain.

“But then because my chassis was damaged from Baku, I’ve now been allocated this chassis. He’s in my Baku chassis, I’m in his chassis from the start of the year.”

The Spanish Grand Prix weekend is traditionally where the development war begins to unfold with big upgrade packages introduced.

If Williams did introduce any new parts or specs, Kubica is not feeling the benefit of them.

“In FP1 the feeling was not too bad and we did our programme,” Kubica said via Motorsport.com. “Second free practice the feeling was not so great.

“We have to understand now the reason but generally it’s still OK. We had to stop for precautionary reasons for around 30 minutes to change one part, and we were not able to complete our long-run programme, but it’s all OK.

“In FP1 the car felt a bit better. FP2, not really. I think I didn’t have any big updates here on my car which I could feel any difference compared to previous races.”

Kubica and Russell were both comfortably in the bottom two throughout the Friday practice sessions in Spain, but at least the latter was a little bit more encouraged by the feeling of the car after testing new parts.

“The pace was closer than what we expected really,” Russell added. “Small positives to take from that and we learned some good things from the things we did test.

“I think it’s normal for everybody to bring a big upgrade to Barcelona but we’re sort of testing things week in week out to try to get a clearer picture of our car, and understanding.

“I don’t think anybody would bring an update big enough to bring us from the back of the field forward. But the tests we did today were very positive in the sense of giving us a good understanding.”

Follow all the action from the Spanish Grand Prix with the PlanetF1 live centre