Our 2022 challenger hit the track for the very first time this afternoon during a damp shakedown session at Silverstone.
Whilst thousands of you were busy tuning into the official Williams Racing livery reveal
, our team were hard at work in the garages of the Northamptonshire circuit getting the FW44 ready to hit the asphalt.
And soon enough, Nicholas Latifi and Alex Albon were out there braving the elements to make sure everything in this revolutionary new car was working as it should.
The FW44 rounds Luffield during a wet shakedown
Designed in line with the new Formula One regulations implemented to encourage closer racing, the FW44 features aerodynamic modifications; including over-wheel winglets and wheel covers, 18” low profile Pirelli tyres and rolled tip rear wings.
The new identity also sees changes to the front wing and nose, as well as underfloor tunnels that will allow cars to create efficient downforce through ground effect.
Inside the car, the 2022 power unit will run on a more sustainable fuel, and the new and improved machines will also have greater safety features.
It was Alex’s first chance to drive a Williams car following his arrival into the team and he was certainly excited to hit the track.
“It’s really exciting to get behind the wheel of the FW44 today; it’s always a big moment when you get in the car for the first time,” said our No23, adding: “The upcoming Barcelona track session will be about making sure we’re efficient with our time to best ensure we have a competitive package heading into the season.
“We don’t have many days before our first race and so we quickly need to understand which areas of the car are strong and where we need to make improvements.
“I’m sure it will be a little bit of a learning curve as we all try to learn how to get the most out of the new regulations, but the objectives and the way that we focus on this car is very much the same as in previous years.
“Ultimately, we’re all still trying to get a racing car around a track as quickly as possible."
His Canadian counterpart also spoke of the importance of next week’s track running in Barcelona, saying: “I’m super excited for testing in Barcelona, to get back behind the wheel, push and see what the car can do.
“Pre-season always feels like quite a long time, but it’s been really busy and there’s been a nice build-up at the factory with lots of hard work from everyone.
“The new regulations should allow for much better racing so I’m excited for the challenge and we will aim to gather some good data from testing, to take us into the first few races.”
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