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Published: 11:56 | 5/11/18

Smedley to leave Williams


Rob Smedley is to leave Williams at the end of the 2018 Formula 1 season.

Currently their Head of Performance Engineering, Smedley followed Felipe Massa to Williams in 2014 and his arrival coincided with the team going on to finish third in the constructors' championship in 2014 and 2015.

They have struggled in recent season - the team have picked up just seven points this year -and Smedley has confirmed that he will leave the team at the end of the current campaign.

“I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at Williams," Smedley said. “The team has been through great change since I joined in 2014 and it has been a pleasure to have played a part in that. Williams is a very special team within the F1 community and I’m certain that with all the talent that we have here they will go on and do better things. The team will always remain close to my heart.

“After 20 years in Formula 1, however, I feel it’s the right time to reflect on things and evaluate what the next move is. I’m thoroughly looking forward to spending more time with my family before deciding on future opportunities.”

Deputy team principal Claire Williams said: “It has been a pleasure having Rob in our team for the last four years and we will miss him both personally and professionally.

“He agreed to join us at a time when our performance was low, and we are grateful that he saw the potential for us to turn things around at that time. During his time with us, he has made a significant contribution to the team through his role, but he’s also been just a great person to have at Grove, inspiring many with his enthusiasm and passion for Formula 1.

“Rob’s been in the sport a long time, so we totally understand and respect his decision to take some well-deserved time out to spend with his wife and boys. We wish him all the best and thank him wholeheartedly for the time, passion and fighting spirit he’s given to Williams.”

Formula 1 heads to Sao Paulo for the Brazilian Grand Prix from November 9-11 with coverage live on eir sport [Race 5.10pm Irish time]. Subscribe here

Image: Getty Images/Mark Thompson

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