The history of the Williams F1 team
Sir Frank Williams founded Williams in the 1970s, and the F1 team remained in the family until August 2020, when they sold their majority stake to US investment firm Dorilton Capital. Dorilton Capital currently own the team but have kept the original family name. By 1979, Williams were already fighting towards the top of the World Championship. They came second to Ferrari in that season. In 1980, they found success and scored almost double the points compared to second-placed Ligier Ford Cosworth.
This success would foreshadow the next two decades of Formula 1. Under Frank Williams, the team signed top drivers and built a very fast car. They went on to win the Constructors Championship again in 1981, 1986 and 1987. Williams joined forces with Renault as their engine manufacturer and dominated most of the 90s, winning again in 1992, 1993, 1994, 1996 and 1997.
Williams then slipped down the Constructors Championship. Aside from a brief revival in 2014 and 2015, Williams are now regularly seen competing towards the back of the grid. Under the guidance of new team boss James Vowles, Williams are hoping to become more and more competitive. In his first year, Williams made steps forward and finished seventh in the Constructors Championship. Their best result since 2017.
Williams in 2024
James Vowles will start his second season at Williams and, therefore, have more of his approach applied to the car. Williams are now equipped with a better car and can often be seen in Q2 and even Q3. They can mix with and sometimes beat Haas, Alfa Romeo, and AlphaTauri. They are hoping to have a car that is competitive at a range of tracks.
Who drives the Williams car?
Alex Albon and Logan Sargeant are currently driving for Williams Racing. Albon is the experienced team leader, having previously raced for Red Bull at the top of the grid. Sargeant is competing in his second season and is the first American driver in F1 since 2015. Albon, 27, is racing in his 4th F1 season. He spent time as Red Bull’s reserve and simulator driver during their successful 2021 season.
Which engine will Williams use?
Williams Racing will use the Mercedes engine for the 2024 Formula 1 season. Williams have had a long-standing relationship with Mercedes that dates back to 2014. There have always been suggestions that their ties will grow stronger than just an engine deal.