Williams not sure car can be repaired for Thursday testing
Williams head of performance Rob Smedley is not sure if his team would be able to repair the severely damaged FW40 in time for Felipe Massa to resume testing on Thursday, in the aftermath of teenage rookie Lance Stroll crashing into a wall during his stint in the cockpit on Wednesday.
Smedley told reporters, “We are still assessing all of the damage, there was a bit of damage to the left hand side of the car and we are having a look at it. I cannot make a full judgement call on it, as to how much has been damaged and what the contingency will be from this point onwards until we have a little bit of time and think about it.”
“There is a question mark but we will be doing our utmost to get out. It is a really important day for testing, today we had a good day learning about the car – and obviously we are desperate to continue that for tomorrow onwards so our aim is to get the car out.”
Canadian 18 year old rookie Stroll spun early on during his first day of testing, on Tuesday, which cost the team valuable track time, and although he managed 98 laps on Wednesday, they again lost an hour and a half of running in the afternoon.
But Smedley was not pointing fingers, “[Stroll] shouldn’t feel he has let them [his crew] down, otherwise we are living in some kind of terrible blame culture and we don’t want that. I wouldn’t even call it a mistake that Lance made today.”
“He was going for an upshift, he was on cold tyres, Felipe [Massa] once or twice on day one made almost exactly the same mistake and that is a guy with 15 years experience. It is for us to understand how to rebalance the car, how to get the tyre working, even in tricky situations on those cold laps to help the drivers in those situations.”
“Nobody stands back and says that is your bit and you are to blame for it – absolutely not. There is no blame to apportion here at all, the main focus as usual is how did it happen, how do we stop it happening again and how do we contain the actions going forward,” added Smedley.