Williams Racing test drivers Jack Aitken and Roy Nissany rounded off a productive day of post-season testing at the Yas Marina circuit in Abu Dhabi, finishing 10th and 14th quickest respectively.
The session was not all about lap times, the team using the valuable time to evaluate parts and gather data that will contribute to the development of the 2021 machine.
“After a tricky season, it was good to finish with a productive and smooth day,” commented Dave Robson, Head of Vehicle Performance. “Both Jack and Roy have driven the car several times this year, but for both to get a chance to have the car for a full day in the calm environment of a Young Driver Day was very valuable for everyone.
“Conditions can be a little different during the Abu Dhabi day than in the afternoon and evening sessions at the race weekend, but nonetheless, it was good, valuable and representative running. Both drivers did an excellent job, enjoyed themselves and gained some very useful experience, which will help them to make increasingly valuable contributions to the car development programmes.
“As well as giving an opportunity to our young drivers, it also gives us a chance to rotate some of the engineers and mechanics, which increases our overall experience level and helps us motivate and train people for the next steps in their careers. With the prospect of longer seasons in the years ahead, this additional training is vital.”
For Aitken, it was a first outing since he impressed in his debut grand prix in Bahrain.
“It was a really good day, and I had lots of fun, but I wish we had more tyres to play with! We got through a nice programme, I got plenty of laps and we had no major issues which is always nice. There were a few things that we went into more detail with that we didn’t have time to in Bahrain. It was nice to go through some of the procedures and really knuckle down in more detail on some things which is a luxury. It was a nice way to end the year and thanks again to Williams for the opportunity.”
And for Nissany, it was another opportunity to get back behind the wheel after driving in FP1 at the Spanish and Italian Grands Prix.
“It is always nice to jump back in the car and today was amazing,” added Nissany. “In contrast to the FP1s, it was a full day with lots of kilometres logged, lots of learning, lots of understanding of the car – a great experience. It was also a challenge in terms of the development, and in terms of understanding a few mechanical changes.
“Overall, I am happy with my performance, and I think the team is as well. It was a great way to end the year. I will take all the conclusions, go deep into the data and spend the winter analysing it all.”