Formula 1

Latifi relieved to make Williams F1 team testing debut in Bahrain

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Nicholas Latifi - Formula 1 - 2019 Bahrain Test
Credit: Williams Racing

Williams Racing reserve driver Nicholas Latifi spoke of his happiness in finally making his debut with the team in the post-Bahrain Grand Prix Formula 1 test in Sakhir.

Former Racing Point F1 Team tester Latifi was scheduled to drive for Williams in winter testing at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, but the delay in getting the troublesome FW42 signed off meant that the team lost the first two days of testing and had to allow full-time drivers George Russell and Robert Kubica enough time in the car.

Latifi, who won the FIA Formula 2 feature race at the Bahrain International Circuit on Saturday, completed 100 laps and set the fifteenth fastest lap seen over Wednesday’s running with a best time of a 1:32.198.

“Today was a really good day which I thoroughly enjoyed,” said Latifi.

“I was originally supposed to drive the car during the pre-season test in Barcelona, so this was my first run with the team on track, so I was very excited to finally get the chance.”

The Canadian explained that he had undergone extensive simulator testing at the team’s Grove factory and had developed a base understanding of the FW42’s performance characteristics, despite both Kubica and Russell’s disapproval of the car’s erratic nature in the first two rounds of the season.

Latifi also said that he believed the test went well, with Williams pleased at the 23-year-old’s feedback and consistency throughout the day.

“I did a lot of preparation in the simulator prior to this so I felt very well prepared and knew what to expect from the car,” he added.

“When I was finally able to start pushing I felt that I quickly got up to speed.

“For me everything went well, and I was very happy to get my first experience in the FW42.”

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