Sven Smeets is the Sporting Director for Williams Racing, having joined the team in November of 2021.
Sven began his motorsport career in 1993 as a co-driver in rallying and became the navigator for Freddy Loix in 1995, with whom he achieved numerous successes with whilst competing in the World Rally Championship. 2005 saw the Belgian join Citroën as co-driver for François Duval, together winning the season’s closing rally in Australia.
Having made the decision to end his career as a co-driver, Sven remained in rallying, taking on the role of Citroën Racing’s Team Manager in 2008, claiming multiple Drivers’ and Manufacturer’s Championships. In 2010 he combined that role with also being the Team Manager for the Peugeot Sport LMP1 programme. Sven moved to Volkswagen Motorsport in 2012, becoming Team Manager ahead of their debut World Rally Championship entry in 2013. The record-breaking year saw the team win 10 of the 13 rallies entered, securing both the Drivers’ and Manufacturer’s Championships on first attempt, ending Citroën’s period of dominance. The team’s unrivalled success continued over the next three years, winning Drivers’ and Manufacturer’s Championships in 2014, 2015 and 2016. Sven continued his career at Volkswagen Motorsport, becoming Motorsport Director in 2016, a role he held for five years.
In his current role, Sven is responsible for the sporting governance and representation of the team in all sporting matters related to the FIA, other teams, and motorsport associations. He plays a key role in supporting the team’s drivers, including being responsible for the Williams Racing Driver Academy, as well as having overall accountability for the race team. Working alongside Jost Capito, FX Demaison and the Williams Racing Management Team, Sven ensures that the optimal culture, resources and environment are in place for the team to succeed