Thursday, 8 December 2011

Team Season Review: Williams

A very disappointing year for Williams, yielding just five points as they really struggled.

Drivers: Rubens Barrichello, Pastor Maldonado
Best Finish: 9th (Monaco, Canada)
Best Qualifying Result: 7th (Britain)
Points: 5
Constructor's Championship: 9th

An absolutely dreadful season for Williams. The Grove based team were nowhere, and this was very probably their worst ever season in Formula One. Scoring just five points, as compared with 2010's total of 69. New boy Pastor Maldonado was a disappointment, while at times Rubens Barrichello was invisible, as he struggled in what could be his last Formula One season. Often they failed to get out of Q1, while they scored points in just three races. Technical staff, including Sam Michael departed, and Mike Coughlan, the man behind the 2007 "Spygate" Scandal returned to F1 with Williams. Williams were linked with a possible return for Kimi Raikkonen in 2012, but he signed for Lotus. The team have signed Pastor Maldonado for 2012, while it is looking increasingly unlikely that Barrichello will stay with the team after two average seasons.

Best Finish: 9th (Monaco, Canada)
Points: 4
Driver's Championship: 17th
Barrichello at Australia
  A poor season for the Brazilian veteran, who was often beaten by rookie team mate Pastor Maldonado. Barrichello was a victim of Williams' terrible early season reliability, retiring with mechanical failures in the first two races, Australia and Malaysia. Barrichello stupidly collided with Nico Rosberg in the season opener at Australia, and it didn't get much better from there, finishing outside the points in the next three races. Finally he and Williams scored points, at Monaco, with a ninth place finish. This made up for his massive crash in the 2010 Monaco Grand Prix. Then at Canada, he took another ninth place, meaning he now had four points. Annoyingly for Barrichello, he wasn't to score points for the rest of the season, as he had an engine failure in Germany. The final race of 2011 was his home race, Brazil. Barrichello qualified excellently, in 12th, describing that it "felt like a pole lap." Unfortunately for him, a horrible start meant he was to finish 14th, in what could have been his last Formula One race.
Maldonado had a great weekend in Monaco

Best Finish: 10th (Belgium)
Points: 1
Driver's Championship: 19th

The Venezuelan, who won the 2010 GP2 championship, endured a horrible year. Admittedly the dreadful car played a part, but Maldonado's performance was quite disappointing. Starting with two retirements in the first two races, his first finish was an 18th in China, which was followed with a heavy crash in Practice for the Turkish Grand Prix. Maldonado qualified an excellent ninth at Spain, but didn't get in the points. An excellent race at Monaco saw him run sixth with just a few laps left, but Lewis Hamilton stupidly crashed into him on the entry to Turn One. He crashed out at Canada, before an exceptional qualifying at Silverstone saw him seventh. All these qualifyings couldn't get him points, until Belgium. He was approaching Lewis Hamilton in qualifying, and they started their laps side by side. Immaturely and stupidly, Maldonado used his car as a weapon to hit Hamilton. He got a ten place grid drop,but most thought a multiple race ban would be appropriate. In fairness, he drove a great race, getting his first point with tenth. Maldonado has talent and potential, and is with Williams in 2012, but the issue this season has been his temprament. His incident in Spa qualifying, as well as his stupid ignorance of blue flags in Abu Dhabi earnt him much criticism.

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