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Belgian Grand Prix: Friday press conference - Pt.2

Mr Symonds, you said that 2014 will see the biggest technical change you've ever seen in Formula One, and obviously Williams provides this energy recovery systems to other means of transport in London. Do you think that this will be a turning point in the history of Formula One to launch more ecological technologies?

Pat Symonds:
Yes, I do. It really is a bit of a double-edged sword, the 2014 power train regulations. On one hand, I'm very, very pleased that the FIA have had the foresight to really look at engine efficiency or powertrain efficiency and use F1 to push those technologies. I guess the downside for us is that it's been a long process to introduce it and of course, from the time of starting to talk about it until introducing it we've been through a major worldwide recession which has made it difficult for all the Formula One teams to embark on such a big project. But we've managed to do it and I think what we need to do now is make sure that we capitalise on it. Formula One, I think, is guilty of far too often hiding its light under a bushel and a lot of the very great things we do as engineers in Formula One we like to keep to ourselves and I think it's time for that to change. I think it's time for the world to know what we are doing with Formula One powertrains in 2014 is really quite advanced. It really is something new, it really is the way of the future and therefore I think we can stop before it happens those who may wish to criticize Formula One and motor sport in general for carbon emissions, for use of fossil fuels. Fossil fuels are here to stay, let's use them efficiently and I think Formula One is doing that, and I think we should be very proud of what we're doing and we should tell the world what we're doing.

Q: (Marc Priestley – F1 Times).
Question for Nick and Tom: firstly, Tom, both you guys have used this passive DRS-type system on the car today. Tom, do you expect to use it any more this weekend. Nick, you've already clarified that you won't, but is it something that you will continue working on? Do the 2014 rules mean that it's a viable concept to continue developing?

Tom McCullough:
So, today we performed a lot of tests on some new parts and the system actually performed better than we were expecting. It's still not at the stage where we think we're going to race it, even though we are pretty tempted at the moment, so there's plenty of engineers looking at a lot of data. We'll make that decision later on tonight. With regards to next year, any system that you can use to help reduce drag will always help you, so yes, it is part of the consideration for next year's car.

Nick Chester:
And the same for Lotus; obviously anything that drops drag is a useful thing to have, so it's an interesting direction to pursue.

Just for clarity, the reason not to continue with it for the weekend, is that because the downside of it, not switching properly, outweighs the possible gains of having it?

Nick Chester:
Partly, and also because we didn't have a full dry session, we couldn't get the normal feedback we would like on it and all the measurements we would like, so it just left us a little nervous after P1 that we didn't want to go into the rest of the weekend with something that may give us a problem, particularly when the car's already competitive and we didn't want to risk having a problem in P3 or qualifying with it.

Q: (Edd Straw – Autosport).
Pat, you talked about the need for getting more out of the potential of Williams with better technical leadership. Do you, based on your preliminary examinations of the team, think that you need further recruitment in senior technical positions to work just under you to achieve that?

Pat Symonds:
Well, the first thing to remember is that I've been there four days, so it's very much first impressions, but those first impressions are that it's a team with fabulous facilities, it's a great factory, there's most of the equipment that we need there and a lot of very good people. And of course, while I may have been there only four days, a lot of those people I have known for many years and worked with many of them, so there is a lot of quality and I think I would re-iterate what I said earlier, that I think that what we need to do at Williams is that we need to look at process and that's really where my focus will be.

Q: (Edd Straw – Autosport).
Nick, the wheelbase change, any concerns that will have a detrimental effect on the good tyre management you've seen from your car? Obviously it will slightly change the way you're loading up the tyres.

Nick Chester:

Related Pictures

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James Key (GBR) Scuderia Toro Rosso Technical Director.
05.07.2013- Press conference, Tom McCullough (GBR) Sauber F1 Team Head of Track Engineering
Jean-Michel Jalinier, Renault president and managing director [Pic credit: Renault]
Nick Chester. Technical Director. Lotus F1 [Pic credit: Lotus F1]
Andrew Green (GBR) Sahara Force India F1 Team Technical Director.
23.08.2013- Free Practice 1, Pat Symonds (GBR) Williams Chief Technical Officer.

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