Williams has carried out a chassis swap between its drivers for this weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix.

According to George Russell, the Briton is now using the chassis teammate Robert Kubica raced in for the first four rounds of the 2019 season, while Kubica is in Russell’s Baku-spec chassis.

The plan always was to swap chassis but Russell’s drain-related incident during Azerbaijan Grand Prix practice prompted an early change due to the damage he picked up after running over the loose manhole cover in Baku FP1.

“I’m in Robert’s chassis this weekend, there was a new chassis Robert was getting, which was always the plan.

“But then because my chassis was damaged from Baku, I’ve now been allocated this chassis. He’s in my Baku chassis, I’m in his chassis from the start of the year.”

The Williams duo once again propped up the timesheets in Barcelona throughout Friday’s practice running, though Russell was encouraged by the reduced deficit to the rest of the field after introducing some “exciting” upgrades this weekend.

Kubica ended up just three tenths slower than Kimi Raikkonen’s Alfa Romeo in FP1, while Russell set the team’s best laptime in FP2 to finish eight tenths adrift of Racing Point’s Sergio Perez.

“We’re probably slightly closer to the rest of the field compared to what we were expecting,” Russell said.

“Especially when we heard or read in the media that everyone was bringing brand new updates and it would be like a brand new car, so we were fairly happy with that.

“I think it’s normal for everybody to bring a big upgrade to Barcelona, we’re sort of taking the approach of testing things week in week out to try and get a clearer picture of our car and understanding because I don’t think anybody would bring us an update to get bring from the back of the field forward.

“But like I said the test we did today was very positive in giving us a good understanding.”

Kubica added: “FP1 feeling was not too bad, we did our programme.

“Second free practice the feeling was not so great. We have to understand now the reason. Generally still okay.

“We had for precautionary reasons have to stop for around 30 minutes to change one part. So we were not able to complete our long run programme, but all okay.

“From performance point of view the gaps are big enough, I think it’s not that we can find one second in the balance of the car.”

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