Williams Martini Racing unveiled their 2015 car yesterday, becoming the first team to do so.
Images of the FW37 were revealed on the front cover of F1 Racing magazine. Williams – who were the only team other than Mercedes to score a pole position in 2014 – finished third in the constructors championship last season and are hoping to build on their successes. Having finished ninth in the 2013 Constructors Championship, Williams made a huge leap forward in performance with Felipe Massa and Valtteri Bottas securing nine podiums and challenging the Mercedes duo at some races.
“The notion for the FW37 was to look closely at the FW36 and its performances,” Pat Symonds, Williams’ Chief Technical Officer, explained. “We then went about recognising what had worked well and identifying and resolving the areas that we felt needed to be improved. Although the aerodynamics of the car were impressive there is always room for improvement particularly as we handle the new 2015 nose regulations”. 2015 will see the departure of the ‘anteater’ noses seen in 2014 as well as the likes of Lotus’ twin tusk variation.
“The first conceptual stage of the FW37 came before the FW36 had turned a wheel,” Symonds continued. “The main element to this is understanding the rule changes and how they will affect the design of the car. From here we can start to see if our ideas will fit within the regulations. The desire to beat Ferrari to third place in the Constructors’ in 2014 meant we pushed our development through to late autumn, but the size of the team is now at a point where it was able to sustain this development whilst still working on the FW37”.
After the substantial technical changes between 2013 and 2014 – including the introduction of new hybrid turbocharged power units – the technical regulations have remained fairly stable going into 2015, despite new nose rules. “We felt we came up against design barriers in the FW36 and so took the opportunity to remove those barriers for the benefit of the performance,” Symonds concluded. “The FW36 carried a reasonable amount of ballast, so we were able to make alterations to the design for added performance without the fear of adding performance without the fear of adding excessive mass. The change in regulations offered us a slight headache. The new front bulkhead and nose geometry had much more of an impact than we had initially anticipated and the effect on the aero was profound. The team have worked hard on pulling back the deficit these regulations have made for us”.
Team Principal and owner Frank Williams is looking to build on the successes the team enjoyed last year. “The team had a fantastic season last year, we are aiming to replicate this development over the winter and to start the 2015 season in a strong position,” he explained. “We have an enormously talented group of people here at Williams who want nothing more than the team to do well. This passion produced a great turn around in fortunes for the team in 2014 and everybody has worked tirelessly to continue that climb up the grid. We have added a few more high profile names to accompany the incredible supportive group of partners we have. After a very strong first year with Mercedes we are looking to further develop the relationship as we look for more podiums in 2015.”
“I feel this year will be equally as exciting as the last and forward to seeing the car on the grid at the first race,” Williams concluded.
The first pre-season test takes place in Jerez from 1st – 4th February.