In an interview with motorsport.com Sergey Sirotkin has expressed his disappointment in parting company with Williams and being denied an opportunity to put right the wrongs of 2018.
With his Williams future out of his control, his financial backers SMP Racing attempted to re-negotiate a cut-price deal for the Russian to continue driving for Williams into 2019.
SMP’s stance was that the performance of the Williams FW41 Sirotkin was given to drive was far below what was expected prior to the start of their partnership, and so acknowledgement of that by Williams in the form of a reduced financial package for 2019 would be well deserved.
But Williams stood firm, and when Robert Kubica was able to put together a financial package that involved Polish petro-chemical company PKN Orlen investing serious money into the team via sponsorship, SMP’s offer was rejected and Sirotkin found himself out of a job.
What is clear is that Sergey desperately wanted to continue driving for Williams.
In an open, and fairly emotional interview, the likes of which you rarely see from Grand Prix drivers, he said:
“Honestly, it’s very tough. I really feel like I had a few things I learned and could do better. But I don’t have the chance to.”
“You put your heart in it, your thoughts are with the team. In this case it’s just such a sad thing.”
“I’m just not ready to take it right now to be honest”
While the statistics show that Sirotkin finished bottom of the F1 World Drivers Championship table, the reality is that he did a very decent job in a car with fundamental issues.
He was able to outqualify his team-mate over the course of the season, and of his three retirements, two were mechanical and only one was as a result of a collision.
So who knows what he would have been able to achieve in Williams cars of years gone by. And I guess that’s his and SMP’s point.
He did allude to brighter times ahead for Williams though. When asked if he thought 2019 would be better for his former team, he said:
“I have all these reasons to think so.”
“[But] it took so much as a human, and I won’t see the result.”
Chin up Sergey – there are plenty more fish in the sea.
Hmm, actually there aren’t. All the fish have been caught, either by expert fishermen or amateurs with really expensive fishing boats.
There are other seas though – some of them have fish, and they’re much easier (and cheaper) to catch.