Paddy Lowe has taken a leave of absence from the Williams Formula 1 team due to "personal reasons".

Following a torrid start to the 2019 season that saw Williams' new F1 car, the FW42, make its on-track debut three days later than planned due to a number of delays, Lowe has taken leave from his role as chief technical officer.

A short statement from Williams read: "Paddy is taking a leave of absence from the business for personal reasons."

Williams has made no further information available at this time.

Lowe said last week in Barcelona that he had no concerns about his future and had not questioned his position following the team's struggles.

“I haven’t paid attention to those subjects in the media," Lowe said.

"I am working very hard and there is an awful lot to do working as a team at all levels of the company. I have no concerns on that side."

Despite Lowe's assurances Williams had completed its pre-season testing programme as planned despite the delays, driver Robert Kubica admitted last week that he only felt 20 percent ready for the new campaign due to the resulting limitations.