Williams 'can't have another year' like 2017
7 September 2017 – Williams' Deputy Team Principal Claire Williams says the operation "can't have another year" like 2017, as it strives to recapture its competitive position.
Williams, after a lean spell, surged up the order when Formula 1 introduced new regulations, taking back-to-back third places in the Constructors' Championship in 2014/15.
However, it slipped to fifth last year, amid sub-par development, and the team holds the position once more this season, albeit having scored fewer points than at this stage 12 months ago.
Paddy Lowe was recruited from Mercedes at the start of the year and Williams is hopeful that the team's current weaknesses can be addressed, in order to demonstrate improvement in 2018.
"As you would expect someone of Paddy's calibre has a plan," Williams commented.
"Ever since he joined us he's been undertaking a full analysis of the team back at the factory but also the race team operations on the ground trackside in order to understand where the weaknesses lie.
"We've gone through that as a board and now we're looking at how we allocate resources moving forward into 2018 so that we can address those weaknesses.
"I think a lot of our weaknesses appeared at the mid-point in last year's season and we can't go into another season having the same issues that we've had.
"So we have full trust in Paddy but also we've brought in a number of other senior personnel to work alongside, so Dirk de Beer heads our aerodynamic department now as well.
"But as I said, we can't have another year like this."
Williams added that the focus on preserving fifth in the standings means the outfit has not yet turned its attention to its 2018 driver line-up.
"I think I've made it really clear that the team at the moment are focusing on the Constructors' Championship; we need to make sure that we consolidate our P5," she said.
"I don't think we're going to close the gap to [Force India], unfortunately, but there's a lot of teams behind us that would love to overtake us and take that P5, and we can't afford that.
"For us, the focus really has to be on track performance at the moment rather than diluting that effort with thoughts about driver line-up."
Williams holds a 15-point advantage over Toro Rosso after Lance Stroll and Felipe Massa claimed seventh and eighth respectively at the Italian Grand Prix.