Vowles: Williams technical structure is 'number one priority'

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New Williams chief James Vowles says putting in place a new technical structure is his number one priority.

Vowles – who previously served as Mercedes' long-standing chief strategist – has succeeded Jost Capito at the helm of the Grove-based squad.

But the German wasn't the only high-profile member to leave the team at the start of the year, with technical director François-Xavier Demaison and later head of aerodynamics Dave Weater also exiting Williams, leaving the outfit without a properly structured technical department.

It's evidently a tough situation for Williams' new team boss, and Vowles' initial focus is now on establishing a new technical department at Williams.

"I think the primary thing is we don't have the structure in place technically, obviously, as a result of the changes that were made," said Vowles in Bahrain on Friday.

"And number one is let's put in place a proper set of structures, in terms of technical director, head of aero. That's number one, because clearly an organisation needs those to move forward."

While hiring a new technical director is a priority, Vowles insisted that he will take his time to identify the right person for the position.

"So there's a strong organisation in place, and it's acting without a TD," he said. "As we speak today, there's a car on track, it's built. They did an incredible job over the winter to achieve that.

"What's clear is this is not about short-term putting someone in place, this is about long-term, and making sure we have the right person in place.

"We're not going to rush to a decision, the key is making sure we find the person that fits the organisation for the long term."

Vowles is still settling in and getting acquainted with his new environment, but the former Mercedes man says that the recent lean years endured by Williams haven't eroded the passion of the team's personnel.

"There's a number of great people there on site," he said. "They've obviously had a difficult probably last 15 years or so, due to just circumstance, lack of investment and otherwise.

"But you can still tell that there the same level of passion that is shared, irrespective of the grid position you're in, is there, and available to you. And the work, whatever it takes really to move forward."

Vowles admitted that moving from Mercedes to Williams, where there are no small savings and where resources are limited, has required the Briton to adapt his mindset.

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