So far, 2017 hasn’t been the season that Williams fans wanted to see in Formula One. They’re fifth in the constructors standings after three races. But, the good news is, they’re just one point behind fourth right now. They’re also a wide 31 points though out of third though.
Rookie Lance Stroll has struggled out of the gates as he’s had a DNF in all three races this year. Felipe Massa, who came out of retirement to replace the departing Valtteri Bottas, has had finishes of sixth, 14th and sixth respectively.
But, I have a feeling that this could change this weekend. In fact, if Stroll can finally finish a race, he will have a points paying opportunity. Then, if Massa can improve, Williams could easily nab double points this weekend for the Russian Grand Prix and not just move into fourth of the constructors standings, but also close the gap to third in the process.
Williams, has been stellar in the brief history of the Russian Grand Prix. They saw their drivers finish third and 11th respectively in the inaugural race in 2014. Then, in 2015, they went fourth and 12th. Last year, they were fourth and fifth.
Four top fives out of their drivers in six tries.
Massa, has finished fourth and fifth the last two years on the 3.637-mile Sochi street circuit while Bottas was third and fourth in two of the three years.
To me, it seems like with Red Bull’s struggles this year and as a whole in Russia, it’s a prime opportunity for Massa to nab another top five. It’s also a prime opportunity for Stroll to not just finish a race, but finish in the top 10 too.
In Friday’s two practice sessions, Massa was strong in being eighth and seventh respective. Stroll, was ninth in session one and 19th in session two.
Then, in the third practice session this morning, Massa was sixth was Stroll was 11th. In qualifying, Massa will start sixth with Stroll 11th.
Williams is the team to watch this weekend.