Former Mercedes director James Vowles listed key areas where the German team was different from Williams. Vowles has moved from the Mercedes technical director role to the team principal role at Williams. In Friday (March 17)'s team principal's press conference, James was asked what he found were the key areas of difference between Mercedes and Williams.
Comparing the two teams, Vowles talked about how the German unit has the best infrastructure that any team could aspire to. On the other hand, Williams, due to a lack of success in the last few years, is lagging in that department. What he thought was similar between the two teams was the passion with which the teams looked at the sport and had a yearning to succeed as well.
"Yeah, I mean, it is very different. You have to take into account that Mercedes was dominant for so many years. It has facilities beyond dreams and desires. To a certain extent, Williams didn't necessarily have that. It had a period of its history where it didn't have the investment required and it reflects that in the building that's there."
"However, what I can see between both organisations is passion: desire to effectively move forward and do the best you can and that remains there whether you're at the back of the grid or the front."
Former Mercedes director praises Logan Sargeant
James Vowles also had special praise for rookie Logan Sargeant after his debut in Bahrain. The American had shown good speed throughout the weekend in Bahrain and was not too far behind Alex Albon as well. Vowles added:
"From the first laps of testing, immediately you could see that the pace was there. I was a little bit reticent in wondering whether it would take him a little bit of time to get used to it. The second aspect is, it’s his first grand prix. The pressure on your shoulders is enormous and he took it in his stride."
"He was three-wide through Turn 1. Normally in your rookie race, that ends up in disaster and he just dealt with it, with enormous amounts of maturity, and from then onwards, and I'm sure as you'll see, throughout the year, he'll step forward."
Williams made a strong start to the 2023 F1 season. The team appeared to be the slowest car during testing but the race was a completely different story as Alex Albon was able to finish inside the top 10.