• Williams

Gender has never bothered me - Claire Williams

ESPN Staff
March 17, 2014 « Ecclestone may sell F1 stake | 'Brilliant' Magnussen defies his age - Boullier »
Claire Williams wants to take the Williams team back to the glory days of the 1980s and 1990s © Sutton Images

Claire Williams insists she has never been fazed by being a woman in the male-dominated sport of Formula One.

Williams is deputy team principal to her father Sir Frank in the team he formed in 1977, but is one of a limited number of women in the sport in a similar level. Sauber's Monisha Kaltenborn became the first female team principal in Formula One in 2012 but remains a unique case, though Williams admits she has never believed she has been looked upon any differently due to her gender.

"Everyone is interested in the female element, which is really weird because I've never, ever considered it" Williams told the Independent." I grew up in F1, so I've been surrounded by men all my life and am used to that. When I was put into this role I never thought, 'Oh God, will people take me seriously because I'm a woman?' I've never really found that it's been more of a challenge doing this role because I'm a girl. I'm just there to do my job. The girl thing just doesn't come into it."

Williams arguably did not live up to pre-season expectations at the season opener, as Valtteri Bottas came home in fifth and Felipe Massa failed to finish. The team has not won a drivers' or constructors' crown since 1997, and has won just one grand prix in nine seasons, but Williams has reiterated her desire to take the team back to its glory days.

"I would hate for the Williams legacy to fade away. There are stories that it will go the way of Tyrrell. Well, over my dead body. No way. That's not going to happen. My dream is to make this a world championship-winning team again."