Sargeant expects 'completely different story' in new season

Logan Sargeant (USA) Williams Racing FW45. 04.11.2023. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 21, Brazilian Grand Prix, Sao Paulo, Brazil, Sprint Day. -, EMail: © Copyright: Batchelor / XPB Images
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Logan Sargent was one of three rookie drivers to start the 2023 season, but expects his sophomore campaign for Williams to be a totally different affair from that of his second.

Sargeant managed to avoid finishing last year pointless, picking up a point for tenth place in his home Grand Prix at the Circuit of the Americas in October.

But with his team mate Alex Albon regularly securing points for the squad, there was significant over whether the 23-year-old from Fort Lauderdale, Florida would retain his seat for a second season.

He was the final driver to be confirmed in place after the season finale in Abu Dhabi, and is under no illusions that he has to up his game in 2024 if his career in F1 is to go any further.

Having now had experience of what it's like to compete in F1 and experience of all but two of the venues of this year's 24-race calendar, Sargeant is confident that 2024 will be a very different experience.

“I just know so much more of what’s coming at me throughout a weekend,” he said. “I know much more of what the car is capable of, what it doesn’t like.

"I’ve just built up a much better feeling for it," he added. "It becomes more natural. Hopefully with a better car as well, [I'll have] a little bit more of a buffer here and there which would make life easier.

"The biggest change is that from a personal perspective, it’s just the amount of knowledge I’ve now built up to this point and understanding the car, more understanding myself how me and the car need to work together to perform.

“That took longer than I wanted it to [in 2023].It was just trial and error of trying things," Sargeant said of his rookie year when asked by Speedcafe. "You made a mistake and you realise that things need to change.

Logan Sargeant (USA) Williams Racing FW45 on the grid. 05.11.2023. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 21, Brazilian Grand Prix, Sao Paulo, Brazil, Race Day. -, EMail: © Copyright: Batchelor / XPB Images

“Vegas was a really good example," he explained. "We had a car that finally gave us a bit of margin to the Q1 cut-off and allowed me the opportunity to drive a little bit more free.

“Especially with that lack of experience, that would help a lot throughout a season. Having that little bit of margin for error and not having to put it all on the line, that first lap in quali.

"It allowed me to build lap after lap, to not have to put it all on the line to get out of Q1," he continued, adding that a big problem as a rookie was to pushy too hard and end up making costly errors.

"It’s very easy to want too much," he said. “You just simply have to tone it back and drive to what the car is capable of, and honestly, just be happy with that.

Logan Sargeant (USA) Williams Racing.
28.11.2023. Formula 1 Testing, Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, Tuesday.
-, EMail: © Copyright: Moy / XPB Images

"It’s better than doing something like I did in Suzuka and throwing it in the wall," he pointed out. “But I feel like I definitely figured it out over the past however many rounds.

"It improved after the summer break, and even from a race pace perspective bar Qatar. In the back half of the season, it was pretty much exactly where I expected it to be.”

Sargeant does appear to enjoy the support and backing of Williams team principal James Vowles who joined the team just after Sargeant was signed up who has given the driver the benefit of the doubt and to offer help and encouragement.

But that can only go so far, and if Sargeant isn't closer to matching Albon's performance in 2024 then there will have to be a rethink on both sides for next year.

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