A single line on Twitter
was enough to confirm that Williams will be among the teams utilising a KERS system when the F1 season finally gets underway in Australia next weekend, despite doubts to the contrary.
The Grove team has run the hybrid technology throughout the winter testing period, but niggling problems with its FW33 were thought to have persuaded it to drop the system ahead of Albert Park, at least until it could determine the cause of the latest gremlins which struck during last week's group test in Barcelona.
Number one driver Rubens Barrichello admitted that Williams was 'not quite where we want to be' after the four-day session at the Circuit de Catalunya closed on Saturday, while rookie team-mate Pastor Maldonado struggled to complete his programme as problems intervened on Friday.
“Rubens completed a race distance this morning, and the mileage and input he has given towards setting up the FW33 has been invaluable to the team,” technical director Sam Michael acknowledged, "However, we had an oil leak on the engine before Pastor took over for the afternoon and, as it was high mileage, we chose to change it. We achieved most of our programme, and know what caused the failure, but we don't know why. As a result, we continued to run in Barcelona without KERS, although everyone is pushing to ensure we have it on the car for Melbourne.”
That effort appears to have borne fruit as a team spokesman confirmed via social network site Twitter
that he had 'just spoken to Sam, and had positive news about KERS.
"[He's] back in factory with designers. Reviewed KERS problem and good news is we'll be racing KERS in Melbourne," the update concluded.
Having not used KERS during its first F1 incarnation in 2009, Williams has designed its own battery-based system for use on the technology's return this season, even though it was alone in pioneering a flywheel-based system that is currently being employed elsewhere.
Michael has said that the team could elect to run the flywheel version during the 2011 season, although such a move is more likely to happen in 2012, as the tightly-packaged FW33 rear end means that the designers have already had to compromise on the siting of the system. The current KERS equipment is housed underneath the chassis, where the bulkier flywheel system would compromise aerodynamics, but Michael insists that the team's original ideas had not been discounted entirely.