Guest Author - Christine Blachford
Williams had a brilliant start to the season with Nico Rosberg taking an unexpected podium in Australia. However, the first race of the season is known for not indicating true performance, and this was definitely the case for Williams. Just like Honda, their competitiveness tailed off as the year progressed, and they ended the season fighting to get out of the first session of qualifying.
However, there were some points finishes to be had, and Rosberg capitalised on every opportunity he could. Nakajima was tasked with learning every circuit bar one, as he enjoyed his first full year in Formula 1. Both drivers performed very well, especially considering the car they had underneath them, and motivation should remain high at the team.
Notably, Williams are one of the teams who had a high level of reliability, and actually finished a high percentage of races. Their drivers steered clear of accidents and so the number of laps completed was pretty good. This is at least a weight off the teamís mind, as reliability can often be a problem over the course of a long season. Williams were consistently good.
The only real down point of the season for the time came in Canada, when Rosberg was involved in the pit lane accident that knocked both Hamilton and Raikkonen from the race. Hamilton and Rosberg received grid penalties for the next race which meant the incident ruined two weekends for the team.
Whilst this year may not have gone to plan, the team are definitely looking ahead to 2009, and have invested heavily in the KERS technology. Itís not mandatory for next season, but Williams have bought a company that specialise in KERS, and have already tried out the 2009 wings in preparation for the new regulations.
The team have very little changes in terms of driver and personnel over the off season, and this will help them carry forward the momentum from this season. Rosberg is often lauded as a potential star in an underperforming car, and this is something the team will be aware of and want to change.