1997 F1 champion Jacques Villeneuve launched yet another scathing attack on Williams F1. He believes that Lawrence Stroll has put the “final nail in Williams’ coffin”. Especially after launching a takeover of Force India.
Lawrence Stroll led a consortium who are set to take over the Force India team. The team was placed into administration ahead of the Hungarian Grand Prix. It is only a matter of time when Lance follows his father to Force India, taking their considerable wealth with them.
Adding to that is the imminent departure of main sponsor Martini. The move is likely going to leave Williams in a whole lot of trouble according to Villeneuve.
“The loss not only of Lawrence, but also the sponsor (Martini) is probably the final nail in the coffin,” Villeneuve told Le Journal de Montreal.
“They’ll then lose a lot of TV rights because they’ll be at the bottom of the championship. Even pay drivers won’t want to spend money there.
“Force India is a better organisation than Williams. They only stopped developing this year because they can’t afford it.
“Lawrence has always made brands grow. It’s one of his strengths. He couldn’t do it at Williams because he was not the owner, but his influence will be greater at Force India.
“He will help them. Force India remained a racing team, unlike Williams.”
Villeneuve also believes that Lance Stroll should move to Force India once the takeover is officially complete. He reckons that it will give him a head start with his new team.
“Lance should finish the season at Force India. He should not wait. He should drive in Belgium at the end of the month,” Villeneuve added.
“The car is better and he would be able to get a head start on next year, and improve his driving style with Force India’s engineers.”