New F1 2021 regulations a step forward - Williams

Williams F1 Team in action

Formula 1’s new-for-2021 regulations are a step in the right direction and will help teams such as Williams long-term, according to the squad’s deputy team boss.

Formula 1 last month published the sporting, technical and – for the first time – financial regulations that will govern the sport from 2021 onwards.

From 2021 a budget cap of $175m per season will be introduced, with Williams having been a key proponent on introducing such financial restrictions across recent years.

“We understand that they’re a first step, moving forward, but they’re certainly a right step in the direction that we wanted to ensure that the sport – but also teams like ours – remain sustainable for the future,” said Deputy Team Principal Claire Williams.

“I think we’re all very aware of how unsustainable at the moment Formula 1 is from a cost perspective.

“So, to have a level of cost-capping at this first juncture is really important to teams like ours. I don’t think that can be underestimated.

“The technical regulations as well are a step in the right direction. I think there’s probably some tweaking to do – but I think certainly as a first step they’re exactly what we wanted to see.”

Williams added that the team lobbied to bring the budget cap forward by one year but that the current compromise is nonetheless a positive move for smaller outfits.

“For teams like ours, for Alfa [Romeo], for Haas, they’re operating on considerably less budget than the rest of the grid,” she said.

“It’s a really difficult piece of work at the moment to try to marry up the programmes we are running for not just this year but for next year and ’21.

“We did try, in the Strategy Group, to see if we could bring the cost cap in earlier, so the bigger teams wouldn’t have to spend all this money they’re worried about spending for next year. That would be clearly a bonus.

“There’s clearly going to need to be some convergence, which I’m sure we will see – we’ve got stability on these regulations for five years from ’21 and beyond. It is difficult. It is incredibly difficult.

“But these regulations, particularly as I said earlier, the financial regulations that we are seeing, are the right things for teams like ours that are truly independent and rely solely on sponsorship.”