Williams leave the Bahrain disappointed after both cars retired from today’s grand prix in the Gulf state.
Pastor Maldonado had a problem with the left-rear of the car, forcing him to spin. The Venezuelan recovered to the pits, but the team had to retire the car.
Bruno Senna almost made it to the end of the race, but had to retire on Lap 55 of 57 with a worsening handling problem on his FW33.
As Chief Operations Engineer Mark Gillan points out, these problems came after the two drivers enjoyed some good opening laps of the grand prix.
“Both cars had good starts gaining quite a few positions by the end of the first lap,” he said. “Pastor's first stint of the race was decent but unfortunately he spun on lap 25 due to a problem on the left-rear of the car, which forced us to retire him from the race. We are still investigating this problem.
“Bruno was running in the mid-field for the majority of the race, but a few laps from the finish he complained of a worsening problem with the handling of the car and we took the difficult decision to retire his car too.
“As a team we now need to regroup and keep pushing in preparation for both the Mugello test and forthcoming Barcelona race.”
Senna said that the pace was not quite there today, and explained how the steering problem manifested itself as the race went on. “We did everything right on the first lap but unfortunately I was struggling to keep the pace to the cars in front,” said the Brazilian. “I think we were quite aggressive with the set-up today but sometimes you don't get it right.
“Towards the end I started feeling a lot of vibration in the brake pedal. The engineers were looking at it, so I kept pushing as you never know what will happen, but the vibration got worse and the decision was made to pit to avoid risking an accident.
“It's disappointing after two points finishes, but it's a long season.”
Maldonado reflected on his retirement: “I had a puncture in the exit of Turn 1 and then spun on the straight,” he said. “I'm disappointed for the team as the performance was there.
“Starting from the back of the pack I was fighting every lap. The car was responding well and I was able to make up many positions. I feel today we could have scored more points but unfortunately it wasn't to be.“