Williams has been forced to dip into George Russell’s engine pool after just one race into the revised 2020 season.
Russell looked set for a promising weekend at the Red Bull Ring in Austria after finishing a whisker away from reaching Q2 in his Williams FW43 – something that would have been an amazing achievement given how far they have cut adrift at the very back of the grid.
But the Brit ended up being one of the nine retired drivers come opening race day in Spielberg, retiring due to concerns over a fuel pressure problem.
Ahead of the second race at the Red Bull Ring, Williams has confirmed that Russell will be driving with a new internal combustion engine, turbocharger and MGU-H components after the original engine was sent back to the Mercedes factory for further investigation.
Some lovely touches on #GR63's 2020 lid 👏 #AustrianGP 🇦🇹 | #WeAreWilliams 💙 pic.twitter.com/XeglxwEv2r
— WILLIAMS RACING (@WilliamsRacing) July 8, 2020
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Russell will not have to take any grid penalties for the new components this weekend but it does significantly increase the likelihood of grid drops later in the season.
Speaking about his opening race of the season, Russell said: “We didn’t have as much pace as we were hoping for today, and I struggled a lot out there. I was trying my hardest to hang on with the Haas and the Alfa Romeo, but they were too fast.
“I had a fuel pressure loss, but I don’t know all the details, I just had to turn the car off. It’s a shame as there were a lot of mistakes made out there today and many cars stopped. It is just one of those things.
“We still need to make some improvements, and we have the opportunity next week to do that.”
Williams are currently looking for new investors after putting the ‘for sale’ sign up above the factory doors and deputy team boss Claire Williams says the team are attracting strong interest.
There is not a whole lot more news other than to say the process is going well and we’re really happy with the interest that we’ve received and the quality of that interest has been really strong as well,” she told Formula1.com.
“It’s a process and it’s going to take a little while to go through that. As and when we can make an announcement, we will.
“We’re looking forward to it, it’s going to set Williams up really well and in conjunction with the new regulations coming through next year, in particular the new financial regulations, it’s going to put Williams on a good footing for hopefully moving forward to much better times for the team.”
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