Williams chief designer Ed Wood quits team


Long-time Williams chief designer Ed Wood has left the team for personal reasons, it has been confirmed.

Reports had been circulating in the Formula 1 paddock in Barcelona on Thursday. The team finally issued a statement acknowledging the development.

"We can confirm that Ed Wood has decided to leave Williams for personal reasons," the team told Motorsport.com.

Wood had been at Grove for 12 years since joining the team from Prodrive in 2006, where he had also been chief designer.

He had previous been a research and development engineer at Ferrari, and a senior development engineer with Renault.

"As Chief Designer, Ed has been instrumental in many successes during his time with the team," the statement read.

"The team would like to express its gratitude to Ed for his hard work over the past 12 years," it added.

"His experience, skill and passion for engineering has been a huge asset to Williams."

The reports come in the wake of a disappointing start to the 2018 season, with the team management unhappy with the performance of the FW41 which has been described as "a curiously low-tech car" by pundits.

The car is expected to feature major upgrades for this weekend's Spanish Grand Prix to maximise aerodynamic performance.

Williams only managed to score their first points of the season in Azerbaijan, the fourth race of the season. They are currently at the bottom of the constructors standings.

The news of Wood's departure comes hot on the heels of Tim Goss's exit from McLaren, which is also having a disappointing start to 2018.

Goos previously worked alongside Paddy Lowe, who is now chief technical officer at Williams. That's led to speculation that Lowe might be lining up Goss as a replacement for Wood.

Other recent signings at Williams include ex-Ferrari man Dirk de Beer as head of aerodynamics, and another former McLaren man Doug McKiernan as chief engineer.

Last week also saw the departure of Sauber technical director Jorg Zander from Sauber.

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