F1: Williams F1 team founder Sir Frank Williams dies, aged 79

“The Williams Racing team is truly saddened by the passing of our founder Sir Frank Williams. Sir Frank was a legend and icon of our sport. His passing marks the end of an era for our team and for the sport of Formula 1. He was one of a kind and a true pioneer. Despite considerable adversity in his life, he led our team to 16 World Championships, making us one of the most successful teams in the history of the sport. His values, including integrity, teamwork and a fierce independence and determination, remain the core ethos of our team and are his legacy, as is the Williams family name under which we proudly race. Our thoughts are with the Williams family at this difficult time.”

Jost Capito, CEO and Team Principal

After being admitted into hospital on Friday, Sir Frank, passed away peacefully this morning surrounded by his family.

Today we pay tribute to our much loved and inspirational figurehead. Frank will be sorely missed. We request that all friends and colleagues respect the Williams family’s wishes for privacy at this time.

For those wishing to pay tribute, we ask that donations are made in place of gifts to the Spinal Injuries Association, alternatively we would welcome flowers to be placed at the entrance of the team’s headquarters in Grove, Oxfordshire. Details of the memorial service will follow in due course.


With Sir Frank heading the team for almost 40 years, he witnessed it win 114 races, 312 podiums, 128 pole positions, nine Constructors’ Championship and seven Drivers’ titles.

In 2012, he stepped down from the board of Williams F1, but retained the role of team principal. However, his daughter Claire ran the day-to-day operations of the outfit.

Last year, the Williams family stepped away from running the squad, with US investment firm Dorilton Capital taking over the Grove-based team.

Frank Williams back in the 1960s
Long Beach, California, USA. 2-4 April 1982. Mario Andretti (Williams FW07C-Ford Cosworth)
Detroit, Michigan, U.S.A.  20-22 June 1986. Ayrton Senna (Lotus 98T Renault) leads Nigel Mansell (Williams FW11 Honda) at the start.  LAT Photographic for Williams F1