The 2009 season will be the most important season for Williams F1 team and though they may have survived for the last 30 years and being the only sole independent team of the “Big Four” of F1, the last few years have gone horribly wrong for the team and it has been 12 years since the team won either the constructor or the driver’s championship and the last time the team won a race win was in Brazil during the 2004 season.
So far based on how the team has fared, this season could be the season that they not only need to win a few races to stat float but they also have a chance of finishing it on the top 3 of the constructor’s championship. If they have a little more luck on their side and manage to get some upgrades in, they could be potentially challenging Brawn GP for race wins. Toyota is another team with a very good package but Nico Rosberg is one of the best driver’s in the grid and he finally has a car that can show his potential and if Williams can get more reliability then he can be on the podium on a very consistent basis.
One things Williams should realize is that the likes of Ferrari, McLaren, BMW and Renault will definitely see a improved performance once the European leg of the calendar starts and Williams should quickly should take some points which are easy offering for now as they only have to take on teams like Brawn, Toyota and RBR. The Chinese GP will be very important for the team and if they managed to get Nico Rosberg on the podium and Kazuki Nakajima score some points, it will give them a good confident boost going into the European season.
Also with the tobacco ban, barring Ferrari no other team has any tobacco manufacturers sponsoring them and Williams traditionally has had major financial corporation’s sponsoring them and with recession, one by one they seem to be pulling out and the only way for Williams to stay float is to do well in the Championship and a Brawn like performance would attract not only new sponsors but also prevent Rosberg from leaving the team as he has said that if Williams are not able to provide him with a package capable of challenging for the title, he will quit and given his talent, getting a drive for the 2010 season will not be tough and the way I see it, the likes of McLaren, BWM, Renault, Toyota (If they stay float), RBR and Renault will all be interested in him.
Williams needs to challenge Brawn and a win during this week’s Chinese GP would once again put them on their rightful place along with the big boys of F1, if not they will become a former has-beens who without a miracle may be forced to pull plug on their F1 project. Williams does not deserve to go down this way and the sport desperately needs the tradition of Williams and the independent fighting nature of Frank Williams.