(Inautonews.com/GMM) Amid reports he and some of his senior technical colleagues could lose their job, Sam Michael is pushing to improve the situation at Williams.
After a disastrous start to the famous British team’s 2011 season, Auto Motor und Sport reports that the Australian technical director is working to get to the bottom of the FW33‘s problems.
“The basis of the car should be good enough to fight for fourth place behind the three top teams,” he is quoted as saying.
The focus of the performance problem is reportedly the front wing.
“We are taking a new version to Turkey,” Michael revealed, “and we will go further with this concept in Barcelona and Monte Carlo.”
“We have discovered in the wind tunnel a new development direction for the front wing,” he added. “The step in Turkey will already be quite big.”
Auto Motor und Sport said Williams had been confused by severe understeer at the first three races that was not observed in the winter tests.
“At the factory we have seen a lot of progress in every area, but not all of it has been seen at the track,” explained Michael, hinting at a Ferrari-like problem with the wind tunnel.
Another likely upgrade is to the rear wing, to make better use of the new ‘DRS’ overtaking flap regulations.
“Mercedes has had up to 7kph more (top speed) than us,” said Michael, also referring to the problems the German team has had with immediately restoring balance to the drivers when the flap is closed again.
“That’s the other side of the coin,” said the Australian. “With our new wing we hope to get it just right.”
And after Turkey, in Barcelona, Williams will try again to introduce an Red Bull-style exhaust layout. “Then we should be able to bring the cars into the top ten,” said Michael.