Williams will hope that a step into the unknown this weekend in India will play to its advantage as it looks to score points for only the fourth time this season.
The team has endured its worst season in F1 so far this year with just five points thus far, and hasn't taken a top ten finish since the Belgian Grand Prix – where Pastor Maldonado scored for the only time this year.
With no-one having prior experience of the new Buddh International Circuit, Williams will aim to score in the first F1 race on Indian soil, although chief operations engineer Mark Gillan admitted that the team expected the race to be far from easy.
“The whole team is looking forward to heading out to the Buddh International Circuit for the first time this week,” he said. “The simulations of the new track indicate a high downforce and medium braking severity track, which should also be reasonably hard on the tyres. Despite our preparations there are still a few uncertainties, such as what the actual tyre grip will be and how the track will evolve throughout the weekend.
“We should see over a one second lap time delta between the two tyre choices for this race, namely the soft and hard tyres, with the soft being quicker. We are also expecting dry weather throughout the weekend, with ambient temperatures in the mid-20˚Cs to low 30˚Cs and track temperatures up in the low 40˚Cs.”
Both Rubens Barrichello and Maldonado will be visiting India for the first time, with the pair having worked on simulators to try and get a taste for what to expect from the weekend.
“I think India will be really interesting for everyone,” Maldonado said. “I haven't been before so I can't wait to get there. Going somewhere new and experiencing new things is always exciting. That's one of the great benefits of Formula One – it takes you to places you may never have visited before!
“The circuit itself looks good and it will be new for all the drivers. For once we will all be starting from scratch! I was at the factory last week working with my engineers in the simulator so I feel as ready as I can be.”