Williams Martini Racing driver Valtteri Bottas has admitted that other teams have out developed the British outfit, and after a difficult season so far, the team has fallen behind Red Bull Racing and are battling with Sahara Force India for fourth place in the Constructors Championship.
Recent upgrades have failed to materialise and Williams are wondering how they have fallen so far behind Red Bull and Scuderia Ferrari, and for the first time since the hybrid era was introduced, Williams have fallen away from being the third fastest team in 2016 and have dropped to at least fourth.
“We have not been 100% satisfied with the development in terms of improvements and upgrades for us as a team,” said Bottas to Autosport. “Some of the other teams have out developed us a little bit, which has now put us under pressure from Force India.
“But this is Formula 1, it’s competitive and it’s tricky to be running up front. The main thing in the second half of the season is we start maximising 100% from the car, which maybe some races we have been struggling to do.”
Williams have many upgrades in the pipeline but Deputy Principal Claire Williams has admitted the drop in form was inevitable.
“Before we start panicking ‘Williams is in disarray or heading back to where we were’, this is just sometimes a consequence of the field tightening up under stable regulations,” said Williams. “But we have made a few errors over the past few races and I think that is only natural when you are trying new things.
“We know what the issues are, the engineering team have been quick to identify where the problems have come from and are dialling things backwards a little bit, before we start bolting on new bits.
“We’re not happy with where we are at the moment, but it’s probably something that is inevitable in F1. It’s how you rise to the challenge, how you find the solutions and make sure you do find the solution.”