Cosworth's F1 business manager Mark Gallagher has said that the company is hopeful of helping Williams
to fight for a position in the top four of the constructors' championship this year.
The company returned to the grid as an engine supplier in 2010 - providing engines for Williams, Lotus, Virgin and Hispania – although it has had an involvement in the sport in recent years after supplying a number of teams with electronic systems.
Speaking in an interview with F1 Fanatic
, Gallagher insisted that the first season back as an engine supplier had been a success and said that he felt the company was producing an engine that was capable of fighting at the front of the field.
"It was a successful year for us," he said. "We had a number of operational objectives for this year which we've achieved. It was a very demanding reintroduction into Formula 1 as an engine supplier.
"I think the reintroduction of Cosworth as an engine supplier has gone well. We didn't suffer a single failure in a race this year. In pre-season testing we expected we would have to do further work to optimise the engine because it had never run in a car. And so many of our new customers didn't test - HRT did no testing, Virgin did limited testing, Lotus did some testing and pretty much all of it was in wet weather.
did all of the testing and they were busy getting their car up to speed. It was only at the beginning of the season we began to learn where we were and optimise our performance. But we made big strides and we look back on the year with a lot of satisfaction. It's certainly been a very good foundation for us to build on in the next few years."
“You don't have to go back that far to see Cosworth producing competitive engines and from what I've seen in my 16 months here, we still produce competitive engines. The difficulty is, our engines are not often in the back of competitive cars. Is that a criticism of the teams we're working with? Absolutely not. It's just a recognition that the overall package has to deliver. I'm not arrogant about it, we know that our engine can always be optimised, but I think Cosworth's image in the last 20 years has often been seen as the underdog manufacturer.”
Williams was a late addition to the Cosworth family for 2011 after the end of its deal with Toyota, with the team securing sixth in the constructors' championship.
With the team hoping to continue the forward progress seen towards the end of 2010, Gallagher said he was confident that the team could fight for the top four this time around.