Driven on by the brilliance and passion of Sir Frank Williams, Williams grew from humble beginnings to become a Formula One behemoth, unrivalled by all except Ferrari and McLaren in terms of enduring success. Over the past four decades the team has racked up Grand Prix wins and championship glory, and in the process nurtured some of the greatest talents in the sport, both in and out the cockpit...
The return of Paddy Lowe as Chief Technical Officer comes too late to truly impact the FW40, which returns just 83 points (to its predecessor’s 138) in the hands of veteran Felipe Massa and rookie team mate Lance Stroll. A surprise podium for Stroll in Azerbaijan is their only top-five result of the year.
Williams' gradual fall down the order continues, as they fail to match the development pace of their rivals, slipping to fifth in the constructors' championship behind Force India. Valtteri Bottas scores their sole podium of the year in Canada, while Felipe Massa bids an emotional farewell to the team - and the paddock - as he retires from F1 racing at the end of the year, only to unexpectedly return for 2017 to partner Canadian rookie Lance Stroll after Bottas leaves for Mercedes.
Williams consolidate their position as F1 racing’s third-best team, but after finishing the previous year with the second-quickest car they are frustrated to slip even further back from the imperious Silver Arrows and to be overhauled by a resurgent Ferrari squad. Two podiums each for Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa are the high points in a year in which the FW37 looked impressive on quick circuits and uncomfortable at slower ones.