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Patrick Head in print - Past, present and possibilities - A huge interview with the Williams stalwart

Published by Christine

As the season creeps ever closer, the Formula One world is beginning to wake up, and what better way to welcome in 2011 than a peek inside Patrick Head's, erm, head. The long-time Williams chief has taken on a gig writing for the well-respected Motor Sport Magazine, with his first column ready to appear in the February 2011 edition. Presumably that is going to be available in the shops at the end of this month, but in case you can't wait that long, Williams have published Head's inaugural post on their website.

The Williams of old testing Pirelli tyres
The Williams of old testing Pirelli tyresCredit: Glenn Dunbar/LAT Photographic

It's full of interesting bits and pieces, quite a pick and mix of thoughts about the upcoming year. I was particularly interested in the paragraph about Pastor Maldonado:

Alongside Rubens will be Pastor Maldonado (above), who won the 2010 GP2 Championship with more victories than any previous champion. He comes with some financial support, but deserves his opportunity on merit. There is no reason why the 2011 championship should not be as close and fascinating as in the previous season, but I have no doubt there will be some surprises, and we are determined to be one of them by moving upwards.

- Patrick Head

There are also thoughts on their KERS system, and Patrick doesn't seem too bothered about the fact they spent a year or two developing a flywheel system, only to introduce the battery version of the device instead.

This is no reflection upon a flywheel system, such as we developed in 2008 for 2009, but it is difficult to package a flywheel system in a Formula 1 car with a 150+kg fuel tank. An F1 capacity battery pack is made up of a number of small lithium-ion cells, and they can be packaged into a shape which is convenient, usually positioned under the centre of the fuel tank.

- Patrick Head

Finally, he keeps everyone in the loop regarding the chassis, noting that all the design has been done for the important elements, but the outer body is being tweaked now. I really enjoyed reading the article, although it does highlight some of the more obvious issues about print. I can't say for certain if the article has already appeared in the magazine or not. The Motor Sport site suggests that the February edition was the latest magazine published at the end of December. There's no mention of Patrick there though. Hang on a second, February in December?? That's a whole other blog post in itself!

Either way, it seems as though we're getting an early glimpse. That is good for us, but bad for the article. If it's not going to appear for another several weeks, things could have changed completely. Talk of designing the chassis is fine now, but by the time it appears on newsstands, we'll have likely seen the car out on track already.

Nevertheless, I am all for the added insight into the paddock, and grateful to both Williams and Motorsport for publishing the article. There is just the small matter of it pointing to a picture of "Pastor Maldonado (above)" and the only face in sight being Patrick's himself.