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Further changes at Williams

ESPNF1 Staff
June 28, 2011 « Vettel 'never ceases to surprise' | »
Williams has been working to turn around a disappointing season having scored only four points so far © Sutton Images

Williams has continued its restructuring with the appointment of Jason Somerville as head of aerodynamics and Mark Gillan as chief operations engineer.

The pair are the first new recruits to move to Williams since Mike Coughlan joined the team as chief engineer earlier this season. Somerville will start work on August 15 while Gillan begins on October 1, although will be attending races immediately. Williams say they "will work with chief engineer Mike Coughlan on the team's current race car and on the development of 2012's FW34."

Somerville has previously been at Williams, working on the FW23, FW24 and FW25 - all race-winning cars - from 1999 to 2003 when he joined Toyota. He rejoins the team from Renault having held the role of project leader - aerodynamics and most recently worked on the innovative R31. Gillan began his career with McLaren in 1998, and has since had spells with Jaguar and Toyota where he became head of aerodynamics.

The shake-up at Williams has already seen announcements that technical director Sam Michael and chief aerodynamicist Jon Tomlinson will step down at the end of the season, with an overlap period designed to help the integration of Somerville and Gillan, along with any further recruits. Team principal Frank Williams said he felt that a strong leadership team was now in place.

"Williams F1 is looking forward to welcoming Jason and Mark to the team," Williams said. "They bring with them talent, experience and good team skills. We now feel that, together with Mike Coughlan, Jason and Mark can form the right technical leadership to take the team forward as we work our way back to the front of the grid."