Coughlan: Williams better suited to Bahrain
16 April 2013 – Despite a difficult start to the 2013 season, Williams Technical Director Mike Coughlan remains upbeat about his team’s chances at this weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix, and believes that the squad's FW35 chassis will be well suited to the challenges presented by the Sakhir circuit.
Teammates Valtteri Bottas and Pastor Maldonado both ran anonymous races in Shanghai, and the pair eventually finished well down the order in 13th and 14th, just in front of the Marussia of Jules Bianchi. With both drivers having previously expressed their frustrations over the disappointing performance of the new car, Coughlan acknowledges that a quick turn-around is needed in the Gulf State.
"It’s been disappointing not to score points in our first three races, but we can be pleased with the fact that Valtteri has managed to bring the car home in every race so far with very solid drives," said Coughlan. "Bahrain is a circuit that has some key characteristics that will present new challenges; it’s a high braking circuit so brake wear will be a factor, it is tough on rear tyres and it has a high ambient temperature.
"We feel that the current car, whilst not as competitive as we would like, will be more competitive in Bahrain because of these factors. For engines it is a high power, high efficiency circuit that places a premium on straight line speed and the Renault engine should be robust at this sort of circuit."
Williams currently sits ninth in the Constructors' Championship and is one of only three teams, alongside Marussia and Caterham, yet to register a point in 2013.