Williams signs up Somerville and Gillan
28 June 2011 – In its latest technical development, Williams has signed up Jason Somerville and Mark Gillan. The former takes on the role of Head of Aerodynamics as the latter adopts the Chief Operations Engineer position. Current technical heads Sam Michael and Jon Tomlinson will be leaving the former Champion team at the end of 2011.
“Williams F1 is looking forward to welcoming Jason and Mark to the team,” says Team Principal and joint owner Sir Frank Williams. “They bring with them talent, experience and good team skills. We now feel that, together with Mike Coughlan, Jason and Mark can form the right technical leadership to take the team forward as we work our way back to the front of the grid.”
2011 does not mark Somerville’s first stint with Williams, as he also worked for the company in 1997 as aerodynamicist for the winning sports car of the 1999 Sebring 12 Hour race and Le Mans 24 Hours for Williams and BMW. After moving to Williams’ F1 squad from 1999, he switched to Toyota in 2003 to become Deputy Head of Aerodynamics. As the Japanese manufacturer departed, Somerville moved to Renault in 2009 and, as Project Leader of Aerodynamics, has been a key player behind the current R31 of Nick Heidfeld and Vitaly Petrov.