For all F1 drivers and teams, 2021 is all set to be a game-changing season in various ways. Former F1 giants Williams are hoping that one certain element works out in their favor from a competitive standpoint.
The new aero rules part of the latest set of technical regulations demand the 2021 cars to have relatively lesser downforce. In addition, the FIA has also removed the usage of floor slots and requires a diagonal cut to reduce the pressure differential.
Williams do believe that these changes could prove to play a significant role over the course of the season. The team’s head of vehicle performance, Dave Robson, is optimistic about these rules.
Hopefully lesser effect of floor rules on Williams, says Robson
Robson stated, “It is a major change to the floor, particularly that area close to the rear tyre. It is an area where we suspect we’re not class leader, let’s say, so hopefully for us it’s less of a hit than some of those other teams.
“I think it is traditionally a very difficult area to understand, particularly how the floor will react to the tyre as it deforms and ages and wears.”
Premier teams such as Mercedes and Red Bull now have to put on their thinking caps to redesign that area of the car. Possibly then, this could compress the gaps in the racing order between the teams.
“So hopefully it will have quite a big effect for the teams at the sharp end and perhaps less so for us. That’s what we’re hoping and hopefully there’s some early indications from the running we did on Friday [in Abu Dhabi] that that might be the case,” concluded Robson.
The team finished at the back of the grid in the 2020 F1 season
It was a season of misery and one to forget for the Grove-based outfit. Failing to pick up a single championship point in the 2020 campaign, they often stayed at the back of the grid throughout the races.
Both George Russell and Nicholas Latifi came close on a few occasions. Ultimately, though, they were beaten for pace and power by their nearest rivals, and sometimes by their own mistakes.
Following Dorilton Capital’s acquisition of the team, some change in performance will be expected. However, it would certainly be interesting to see how Williams’ season pans out in 2021, ahead of the all-important 2022 season.