Paddy Lowe admitted seeing both Sergey Sirotkin and Lance Stroll retire from the German Grand Prix on Sunday was disappointing for the Williams Martini Racing team, particularly as he felt they could have scored points had they not fallen by the wayside.
Lowe, the Chief Technical Officer of the Grove-based team, felt they had worked their way into good positions by managing the tyre strategies well during the tricky stage of the race when the rain began to fall, but unfortunately an oil leak for Sirotkin and a rear brake issue for Stroll curtailed their afternoons, leaving them still rooted to the bottom of the Championship standings with only four points to their name.
Reliability has been pretty good for Williams in 2018, and Lowe admitted it was a blow to see both drivers forced out through no fault of their own, although it was clear in both cases it was a necessity for them to stop.
“That was a disappointing result for us today,” said Lowe. “It was a particularly tricky race with the rain and these are always a test of the race operations and the drivers’ responses to rapidly changing conditions.
“I think we called it pretty well and would have been in comparatively good positions and possibly in the points, but both the cars broke down for entirely different reasons. This is a particular blow as if there is one thing we have achieved this year it is being significantly more reliable than last year, with only one other car related retirement this year.
“Sergey had an oil fire due to an oil leak somewhere in the engine circuit, but we are still investigating this, and in Lance’s case he had a failure in the rear brake circuit, losing all control of the rear brakes. In both cases it was clearly necessary to stop the car straightaway.”