This Grand Prix will be the last Formula 1 race in which the Williams family will participate. The family will leave the circus after 43 years and 739 Grand Prix after the company was moved into the hands of the Dorilton Capital.
Sir Frank and his daughter Claire said the family has held the reins of the team since the first race in 1977 at the Jarama circuit in Spain.
The team has always been regarded as a family and this is how the adversities and triumphs that have brought Williams forward have always been met..
Grove's team boasts 114 Grand Prix wins, 128 pole positions and 133 fastest laps, culminating in nine Constructors' and seven Drivers' World Championships.
In addition, Williams is one of the teams with the most years of presence in the history of Formula 1 and one of the best ever.
Securing the team's future within the F1 Championship will be the transfer of ownership of Williams Grand Prix Engineering to an investment company, the Dorilton Capital.
Claire Williams, Williams Deputy Team Principal, made statements recalling the years spent in the circus: “With the future of the team now secured, this feels like the appropriate time for us to step away from the sport. As a family, we have always prioritised Williams. We have demonstrated that by our recent actions with the Strategic Review process and we believe now is the right time to hand over the reins and give the new owners the opportunity to take the team into the future.
“We have been in this sport for more than four decades. We are incredibly proud of our track record and the legacy we leave behind. We have always been in it for the love of it, for the pure pleasure of going motor racing, so this is not a decision that we have taken lightly but after much reflection and as a family.
“We are greatly appreciative of Dorilton’s encouragement to continue, but in them we know the team will be in good hands and the Williams name will live on. This may be the end of an era for Williams as a family-run team, but it is the beginning of a new era for Williams Racing and we wish them much success in the future.
“On behalf of Frank and the Williams family, I would like to say how incredibly grateful and humbled we are for the support we have enjoyed over the years, from our friends in the paddock to the many fans around the world. But mostly, we would like to thank our team. People who have worked at Williams in the past and present. They are the true warriors of this team and have made it what it is and we wish them well. Formula One has been our life for so long and now it’s time for a new chapter in our lives to begin.”
Dorilton Capital and Williams Grand Prix Engineering president Matthew Savage also said: “We fully respect the very tough decision of Claire and the Williams family to step away from the team and the business after securing new resources for its future. Claire’s achievement in sustaining Williams Racing’s heritage, relevance and commitment to innovation in a difficult environment since taking charge in 2013 has been nothing short of monumental. She has also been hugely instrumental in shaping a more level technical and financial playing field for F1, which will help to ensure the team’s return to the front of the grid in seasons to come. We are proud to carry the Williams name into the next exciting phase for the sport and we thank Sir Frank, Claire and the Williams family for the opportunity to be part of this great British brand.”
In the afternoon, Williams also announced that Matthew Savage, Darren Fultz and James Matthews will make up the company's new Board of Directors following Dorilton Capital's takeover.
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