Rob Smedley says he will “cut all the slack out” now that he has taken charge at Williams.
Having moved from Ferrari over the winter, Smedley began work in his role as head of vehicle performance at the Bahrain Grand Prix. Overseeing work both at the track and back at the factory, Smedley has wide scope to influence the team and - after more points were lost for Felipe Massa in China - he said he will be making his presence felt quickly.
“There are areas that we need to improve, there’s no doubt about it,” he said. It’s clear and I’m not going to hide behind that and say that there isn’t and it’s all fantastic; it’s clearly not. That’s part of what I’m here to do, to help the middle management structure create a much slicker, better operation.
“It’s not down to any one individual, the issues that we have. I spoke with all the guys after the race and even the guys who brought the tyres out for the pit stops or whatever, I said ‘if you want to blame anyone then blame me, because that is what I’m paid to do’. I take that s**t on my shoulders; that’s my position within the team.
“I’m not going to stand here and make excuses that I’ve only been here three weeks because that’s not acceptable either. I have only been here three weeks but I’m in charge now. So I need to get the whole thing working better, working more efficiently, cut all the slack out of it, cut all the mistakes, all the reliability issues and that will undoubtedly move us up the grid.”
And Smedley admitted his Ferrari background has helped him to come in and see key areas where Williams needs to improve.
“When you come from somewhere where it’s all very well sorted – certainly operationally-wise – it’s pretty good down at the old place. So perhaps things are quite obvious to me which aren’t quite so obvious to the other guys. The analogy I use is at the old place if you wanted to get the apples off the trees you needed a longer and longer stick, and here you’re walking through and you’ve got so many apples you don’t know which one to pick.”
Story by Chris Medland Crash.net
Rob Smedley is currently talking to Gary Anderson. You can view this interview on the Official F1 App later today.
Rob Smedley on working with Felipe at Williams, Formula 1 app interview
Like if you’re a teacher at the school your kid goes to, haha… I’m surprised Rob never objects to being called Felipe’s “second dad” being as how he’s only 7 years older than him lol
"Thankfully he’s come out the other side… with no permanent scars, let’s say - he’s got one above his eye here but apart from that he’s alright!"
Felipe Massa (and Dudu and Andrew and Rob), Friday & Saturday, 2014 Chinese Grand Prix.