Williams’ Pat Symonds: “Japan is my favourite circuit”


Felipe Massa - Malaysia Photo: Glenn Dunbar/Williams

It appears that the Japanese Grand Prix isn’t just a firm favourite amongst the drivers, with its high speed and challenging nature, but also with Chief Technical Officer at Williams Martini Racing, Pat Symonds.

Japan is my favourite circuit, which is a view shared by many of the drivers and engineers,” commented Symonds, who has held the position of Chief Technical officer at the team since 2013. “It presents so many challenges to us from the fast first corner and 130R, to the very difficult continual changes of direction that are found from turn two up to turn seven.”

He went on to describe how the track challenges not only the drivers and cars, but the tyres too, which is why the Soft, Medium and Hard tyres are being made available for the drivers this weekend. “Couple this with the long high-loading through the Spoon Curves (T13-14) one can begin to understand how it challenges the cars, drivers and tyres.”

As a customer of championship leaders Mercedes-Benz, Williams are dependent upon the Brackley-based teams for engine upgrades to enhance their performance. Symonds revealed that the Japanese Grand Prix will see Mercedes bringing in their final engine upgrade of the year:

“For Japan, Mercedes are also introducing their final power unit upgrade of the year, which will be available to all its customers, and is one which we hope will allow us to improve our performance for the remaining races of the season.”