Williams is set to see both this season and the 2020 Formula 1 world championship effectively as one campaign as it joins the rest of the grid in running two separate development programmes to prepare for the 2021 shake-up.

After a disastrous 2019 with the British team finishing bottom of the F1 world constructors’ championship with only a single point scored all year, Williams will hope to recover next season with its revised driver line-up of rookie Nicholas Latifi joining George Russell.

But with unchanged rules and regulations going into 2020, Williams is already expecting a similar pattern and performance pecking order seen this year due to the limited opportunity in finding clear gains on rivals.

Twinned with the extra challenge of the 2021 rules shake-up, deputy team principal Claire Williams sees next year as a continuation of its 2019 efforts with a fresh start targeted in the F1 overhaul.

“For us, it is a real challenge back at the factory, trying to run those two programmes, for next year, for 2021 – but obviously we’ve been trying to run this year’s programme, when we haven’t let development slide,” Williams said.

“We’ve got to continue to bring upgrades to the car over the course of this season, which we’ve been doing, and really we’re looking at 2019 and 2020 as one long campaign.

“So, it is difficult – but we wanted the 2021 regulations to come in. We lobbied hard for them, so we’ve just got to deal with the problem head on and do the best job that we can.

“I think everyone in the pit lane is going to have a challenge on their hands. I think it will be slightly easier for the top three teams with bigger budgets.”

Reports have emerged linking Nick Chester to the Grove-based team after the technical head left Renault at the end of this season. Since Paddy Lowe stood down as chief technical officer of Williams after a nightmare start to 2019, co-founder Sir Patrick Head stepped in from April on a temporary basis to oversee its engineering division.

Earlier this week Williams also signed ex-Red Bull junior Dan Ticktum as development driver in its academy from 2020.

 

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