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$2 Million Hole in Coffers Sets Back James Vowles’ Plans to Lift Williams Out of Misery

Sabyasachi Biswas

$2 Million Hole in Coffers Sets Back James Vowles’ Plans to Lift Williams Out of Misery

Williams had a disastrous start to their 2024 season and it’s unrelated to their development. Four crashes in as many race weekends crippled the British team and jeopardized James Vowles’ all hopes of taking them all the way to the top. According to reports, the crash damages accumulated by the team so far are beyond $2 million, and it’s certainly a roadblock for the team.

Alex Albon and Logan Sargeant had two crashes each in four races, and the repairing cost? $2 million per That too amidst a budget cap which allows the teams to spend $135 million per season. With the Grove-based team already languishing at the bottom, this has added to their ongoing woes.

Most teams would hope to sustain lesser damage than Williams, let alone receive as staggering amounts as this. That too with just four races into a season that has 24 races and six sprint races in the calendar. Notably, Vowles and Co. are not new to such expensive predicaments as they had to deal with the crash damage expense of $7 million last year.

Nevertheless, the back-to-back crashes made them doubtful if they would be able to field two fully fit cars for the upcoming Chinese GP. The British team already had to keep Sargeant away from racing in Melbourne after his teammate Albon crashed his car against the barrier. The damage was so significant that Williams failed to repair them and get them ready for the race.

Vowles then took the harsh decision to allow Albon, the best driver hands down at the team, to race with Sargeant’s car. Following that, things took a worse turn for them after the American driver crashed his FW46 in FP1 in Suzuka and saw his car suffering monumental damage. According to reports, it sustained damage in the gearbox, floor, front wing and other components.

Williams in jeopardy after endless crashes in 2024

After back-to-back crashes, Williams are in deep trouble right in the initial days of this season. With Haas and RB, their primary competitors have already put their cars inside the top ten, the cash-strapped team have failed to put their car on the grid once. This not only set the team back but also jeopardized their developmental trajectory.

Speaking about the same, Vowles, the Williams boss said, “To have three [now four] major accidents, where you’ve pretty much taken out all the equipment out of the car, is enormous. Taking that across the season, you can deal with it. Taking across just a few races is difficult. And the impact of it would be what you expect.”

As the British outfit are dealing with significant blows from two drivers parallelly week-in, and week-out, this also hampered their progress in terms of upgrades. The team is struggling to repair the damaged parts, let alone elevate the performances of FW46.

Ultimately, Williams are currently languishing at the bottom with Sauber and Alpine, and have no points to their name. As things stand, they are unlikely to have any, anytime soon.

Post Edited By:Tanish Chachra

About the author

Sabyasachi Biswas

Sabyasachi Biswas


Sabyasachi Biswas is an F1 journalist at The SportsRush. With over one and a half decades of love for the sport and five years of experience in the field, he dreams to be a regular at the paddock when the lights go out. A Red Bull fan and F1 fan in general over the years, he enjoyed watching Felipe Massa, Sebastian Vettel, and Max Verstappen dominate the track. Apart from F1, he's also a big-time Madridista and Federer fanatic. He was a sub-junior level footballer, won inter-district quizzes and debate competitions back in school. A travel freak throughout, he tries different cuisines and learns new cultures whenever he's away from the keyboard.

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