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Pastor Maldonado hits out at Williams for sabotage // Maldonado blames the team for his poor performance in qualifying

Published by Christine Blachford

Pastor Maldonado hits out at Williams for sabotage
Credit: Glenn Dunbar/Williams
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Pastor Maldonado dropped out of qualifying in Austin in the first session. The Williams driver was understandably frustrated, but took the extra step of throwing the blame on the team. Immediately after the session, the Venezuelan said: “I think I never got 100% from the tyres, I think in my car, somebody is playing with the pressure and temperatures.” When asked to expand, he simply said the team would need to answer to his claims.

Deputy Team Principal Claire Williams was understanding, saying there's a lot of adrenaline after qualifying but Williams would never sabotage a driver’s car. Chief race engineer Xevi Pujolar added that because the grip was so low out on track, the smallest things could make the biggest difference.

Maldonado wasn’t convinced, saying: “I don’t know why I am slow and they haven’t told me what the problem is. They are not the typical problems we’ve had through the season. It is something more.”

Pastor has made no secret of his desire to leave Williams and find himself a more competitive drive, but the relationship has taken another nosedive as Maldonado burns his bridges in this penultimate race weekend.