Williams

The Williams brand has been an important part of the Scalextric range since the FW07B car of Alan Jones was introduced in 1981. Since then a total of ten different Williams models have been added making the Williams a neat achievable collectable theme. The iconics RED 5 of Nigel Mansell was released as an FW11 in 1987 but has also been released (new tooling) as the correct FW14B (C2972) in 2009 after an aborted attempt in 1994 was not released.

All about Williams F1 courtesy of F1Fanatic.co.uk .

Frank Williams originally ran a team using customer cars. Then in 1977 he set up Williams as an F1 constructor and two years later Clay Regazzoni gave the team its first win at Silverstone.

The following year Williams were constructors’ champions for the first time and Alan Jones claimed the drivers’ title. Two years later Keke Rosberg followed in Jones’s footsteps, again with Cosworth power.

A switch to Honda turbo engines took a while to come good but it delivered in a big way in the mid-eighties when Nelson Piquet and Nigel Mansell were driving. Williams won back-to-back constructors’ championships, Mansell narrowly missed the 1986 title, and Piquet clinched it the following year.

But the loss of Honda engines to McLaren in 1988 hit the team hard. The seeds of recovery were sown when they switched to Renault power in 1989.

Mansell returned in 1991 and the following year Williams dominated again with the FW14B, which pioneered technology such as active suspension. While Mansell fumed at the arrival of Alain Prost for 1993 it didn’t knock the team off its stride – they easily retained their constructors’ title and Prost retired after claiming his fourth drivers’ championship.

Ayrton Senna arrived in Prost’s place in 1994 but it proved a tragically short partnership. Senna was killed in the third race of the season, leaving Damon Hill to lead the team.

Hill delivered the title in 1996 and Jacques Villeneuve followed in his footsteps the next year. But the departure of Renault left Williams looks for an engine supplier once more.

A new partnership with BMW brought race wins but not championships, and since the two split at the end of 2005 Williams has struggled to escape from the midfield.

Renault returned as engine suppliers in 2012 and the team were back on the top step of the podium within five races, Pastor Maldonado winning in Spain. However they split at the end of 2013 and Williams became a Mercedes engine customer. This proved a well-timed move as the class-leading power unit propelled Williams to third in the championship.

Advertisements