Details of when and how ROKiT Williams Racing plans to launch its 2020 car – the Williams FW43 – to the world have been revealed, albeit unofficially, over at racefans.net
On the 17th of February, two days prior to pre-season kicking off in Barcelona, a 2019 FW42 will be decked out in the team’s 2020 livery (that I have my suspicions will be red and white, despite the protestation of other Williams fans!) and presented to the media.
At the same time, a CGI version of the new FW43 will be released via the team’s online media channels
An actual FW43 will not be seen in the flesh until the 19th of February, the first day of the Barcelona test, and all being well, the day it first takes to the track to post a series of blistering laps that prompt Lewis Hamilton to involuntarily spit his tea all over the Mercedes garage.
Williams suffered a disastrous start to their 2019 campaign, missing the start of pre-season testing, which set the tone for the rest of a dismal season – something the team can ill afford a repeat of in 2020.
Although the year is a mere 24 days old, it’s been refreshingly positive for Williams thus far. The FW43 sailed through the FIA’s rigorous crash tests at the first time of asking (a hurdle its predecessor struggled to clear) and a number of sponsors and partners have been added to its ranks, leaving the team’s budget for the forthcoming year in a ‘healthy’ position according to Deputy Team Principal Claire Williams.
Williams will be keen to prolong this with a successful car launch/launches leading into what they hope will be an encouraging and rewarding pre-season test.
It’s now some 2,800 days and counting since Williams last won a Grand Prix, and so everyone at Williams including drivers George Russell and Nicholas Latifi will be keen to bring that record winless streak to an abrupt halt.
I doubt very much whether the FW43 is going to be the car with which they do it, but hopefully it’s a step in the right direction.