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Behind the scenes with Logan Sargeant: Williams’ rookie on his new deal for next year and his goals for 2024
Hey all, for my final column on F1.com I’m writing to you from the Williams Racing factory in Grove, where I’m spending my final day with the team in 2023 before heading to Florida for a much-needed winter break.
As you’ll have seen and read in this column over the last few months, my rookie season in Formula 1 has been up and down, so I’m extremely pleased I’ve got the opportunity to continue the journey we have been on for the last few years together following confirmation I’ll drive for Williams Racing again next year.
I’m so excited to keep growing within the team. I’m just scratching the surface of what I’m capable of and now going into my first F1 off-season, I have a chance to reflect and see how I can be better.
I didn’t find out what my future looked like until just before the announcement was made – a few days after the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
I had a long, very honest and open conversation with our Team Principal James Vowles after the post-season test at Yas Island on Tuesday.
He congratulated me on the new deal and said he was excited to continue, as I am. We then just went over the main things he wants to see from me, about how I can be better, what I need to do to be better and what the team expect of me going forward.
It was just a good and honest conversation. It was one we needed to have, and it was great to get the news in what was just a normal chat that James and I are used to having.
I won’t go too much into detail about what he said I need to do, but I understood where he wanted me to go, he understood the direction I wanted to go – and it’s all the same direction. Everything is clear.
So much of this year has been trying to find the right approach going into a weekend, how I want to approach each session. Essentially it took me quite a while to understand the best way to attack the weekend for myself and how to get the most out of it.
By the end of the year, the last four or five rounds, I was happy with the direction we were heading. I just want to pick back up where we left off and improve on that. That must be the goal and I have more than full belief that I can do so.
It’s great to have my team mate Alex Albon as such a good reference. It shows me the places I need to work on and again, that’s something that isn’t always the easiest to do in season as you’re so caught up in the mix. That’s something I can improve on when reflecting on what has been a long season.
The mood in the team is great after we secured seventh in the constructors’ championship. Of course, we must be realistic. We don’t expect to go from seventh to crazy high up next year.
We didn’t bring an upgrade after Canada, so it’s been a long time since the focus shifted to 2024. I can say from personal experience, the work we’re doing on the sim is all going in the right direction. It feels like a good step better. It’s always one of those where you’re cautious until you put the car on the ground. We don’t want to get overexcited.
I’m now heading back to Florida to find some warm weather! It’ll be nice to get home, see the sun, and more importantly see my family and friends. I’ll hopefully play some golf, make sure I stay active in the gym and I’m sure we’ll do some fishing. A lot of reflection comes with taking a bit of time off, letting your mind recharge, giving yourself some time away from the sport. That makes you come back better.
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Other than that, it’s just going to be training as usual, trying to get my body in the best shape I can be in for next year. I think that’s another place I can make a good step.
I’m just going to do my best to increase the intensity of my training. We were very busy at the back end of last year and start of this year with work at the factory and that took away a bit of time at the gym, that I’ll have next year. So, it’ll give me an extra few weeks of training and that makes quite a big difference.
Thanks for reading this column and following me through my first season in Formula 1. I’ve really appreciated the support. I hope you all have a great Christmas and I’ll see you back on track in 2024.