Williams were one of the feel-good stories from Winter Testing after a disastrous 2019. Unlike last year, the Grove-based team took part in every single day of the two tests and got plenty of laps in, despite some reliability worries with the Mercedes engine.
Williams' best time of 2019 Winter Testing was a 1:18.130 from George Russell. Across the course of this test, their quickest time was a 1:16.871 from the Brit. That’s a 1.259s improvement.
While the British squad has clearly made strides, George Russell expects them to still be the ‘’slowest’’ when the season starts in Melbourne is less than two weeks' time.
“I doubt we’re in a better position.
‘’I think realistically we are still the slowest car, and we’re not going to get carried away with ourselves, but we’ve definitely reduced the gap. That’s sort of all we could have hoped for over the winter, and we’ll go to Melbourne and see.
‘’Don’t expect to see us in Q2, Q3 sort of thing. We’ve definitely improved, but expectations are all under control.”
Last year when we outperformed our car, we were still qualifying 19th and finishing 19th,’’ Russell added.
‘’I hope this year when people slip up and we perform well, that’s when we can take up the opportunities.’’
‘’We should be racing, but expectations are under control. Doing it in Barcelona winter testing is one thing, but going to Melbourne will be a completely different story.”
On the engine worries, Russell said ''I just get in and drive and I’ll leave that to the guys at Mercedes and here. Obviously not ideal, but it’s one of those things. Mercedes are pushing the limits at the moment, and I’m sure they’ll go back and review everything.’’