Interview with Williams’ Sam Michael
14 June 2011 – Having endured their worst ever start to an F1 season, failing to score in the first five races of 2011, Williams have now enjoyed two consecutive top ten results with Rubens Barrichello. Technical Director Sam Michael shares his Montreal analysis.
Rubens scored more points for Williams in the Canadian Grand Prix. How would you sum up the performance of the FW33 at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve?
We made some good progress in the right direction this weekend, in particular with the development of our exhaust blown diffuser.
How did the car's aerodynamic updates perform?
We raced a new diffuser, brake ducts and barge boards in Canada. We also had a development to the front wing, although we didn’t race that due to the characteristics not suiting the Montréal circuit.
The rain on race day was forecast. Did you set up either of the team’s cars for the wet, even though qualifying was dry?
Yes, we set up both cars with wet weather in mind.
How did Pirelli’s Wet and Intermediate tyres perform during the race?
The tyres held up really well in terms of wear rate and degradation.
At one stage, the race had to be abandoned for two hours due to the rain. What changes did you make to the car during that period and what did the drivers do?
We were only able to perform some accident repair work as the regulations don’t allow for any other setup changes.
How effective was the double DRS zone, once the track started to dry out towards the end of the race?
It is difficult to make a proper judgement about that as the tyre performance dominated overtaking ability. It certainly wasn’t a bad thing, so I’m sure this will be tried again in future.
Valencia comes next. What are you expectations for the European Grand Prix?
We have some further diffuser modifications for the European Grand Prix and our target is to get into the top ten in both qualifying and the race.
Also on Tuesday:
Interview with Williams' Mike Coughlan