End of an era as Head quits Williams after 34 years at the team he co-founded


Pastures new: Patrick Head Heading for new pastures: Patrick Head Patrick Head has called time on his active involvement in Formula One team Williams after their worst season in the sport. Williams co-founder Head, 65, ruled out complete retirement but said: ‘I am not going to be directly part of the Williams Formula One programme next year.’ The former world champions ended the season in Brazil on Sunday ninth overall in the constructors’ standings and with just five points to their credit from 19 races. That was Williams’ lowest position since 1978, when points were awarded only to the top six finishers in a race and they scored 11. Two years later, they were champions. Had this season’s tally been calculated under that system, or even the one in force up until last year rewarding the top eight, they would have ended up with nothing. Head, who set up Williams Grand Prix Engineering with principal Frank Williams in 1977 and designed a series of world-beating cars, said he would focus on work for Williams Hybrid Power, which deals with flywheel technology for broader commercial use in buses and trains.

Season to forget: Williams won just five points in 19 races in 2011Season to forget: Williams won just five points in 19 races in 2011

‘I certainly didn’t have an ambition to stop my involvement in Formula One with a season like this last one we’ve had behind us,’ said the Briton. ‘But when I have a look at what specifically I can do to assist (technical director) Mike Coughlan and (Chief Operations Officer) Mark Gillan and (Head of Aerodynamics) Jason Somerville, I came to the conclusion that it isn’t really enough to justify me carrying on doing the same thing. ‘It’s not interesting for me and it’s not good for the company so I decided to have a change of focus, that’s all,’ declared Head. ‘I certainly think those three people are good and I’m quite certain they will lift the capability of the company upwards. But we’ve fallen into quite a poor level, quite a long way to go. It’s not going to happen over a one-year cycle.’

Co-founders: Head (right) started the team with Frank Williams (left)Co-founders: Head (right) started the team with Frank Williams (left)

Head sold more than half of his shares in Williams earlier in the year, netting more than £30million, when the team made an initial public offering. Williams won nine constructors’ titles and seven drivers’ championships between 1980 and 1997 but have not won a race since Colombian Juan Pablo Montoya’s triumph in the 2004 Brazilian Grand Prix. Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/formulaone/article-2067191/Patrick-Head-quits-Williams-wont-retire-Formula-One.html#ixzz1fAXz642r

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