Technical chief leaves Renault F1, headed to Williams (2nd Update)

Claire WIlliams will not comment on rumor
Claire WIlliams will not comment on rumor

UPDATE (GMM) Recently ousted Renault technical boss Nick Chester could be set to join F1 backmarker Williams.

After a disappointing 2019, Renault boss Cyril Abiteboul said the team's drivers and engine are now strong, "so by elimination, there is the chassis".

Chester, though, could find refuge at Williams, the once-great independent British team.

"We never comment on personnel issues and certainly not on rumors," Claire Williams is quoted as saying by Speed Week.

In Abu Dhabi, she had said Williams already has a "good technical team", but admitted: "Of course you always look around the paddock.

"But we're not in a rush to replace Paddy Lowe. We want to do the right thing for Williams."

2018 Williams driver Sergey Sirotkin said recently that he thinks the embattled team should focus now on 2021, to "get the most out of the new regulations".

Claire Williams admits that the new rules are both an opportunity and a challenge for a team like Williams.

"I think it will be slightly easier for the top three teams with bigger budgets," she said.

"For us, it is a real challenge back at the factory, trying to run those two programs, for next year, for 2021.

"Really we're looking at 2019 and 2020 as one long campaign, but we wanted the 2021 regulations to come in. We lobbied hard for them so we've just got to deal with the problem head on," Williams added.

Nick Chester leaving Renault
Nick Chester headed to Williams?

12/17/19 Earlier this month Renault had announced Chester had started a period of gardening leave as the team undergoes a technical reshuffle in response to its disappointing performance this season.

Chester has now been linked with a senior role at the Williams team next year.

12/07/19 Renault has confirmed a major restructure of its Formula 1 technical department which will see long serving chassis chief Nick Chester depart.

Chester has been a key fixture at the Enstone squad for 19 years joining the operation when it ran under the banner of Benetton.

His departure is the latest change to the team’s technical department as the outfit looks to reshuffle its resources that will see former McLaren chief engineer and Ferrari chassis technical director Pat Fry join the squad.

Renault F1 boss Cyril Abiteboul paid tribute to Chester highlighting his passion and drive to bring Renault back to the front of the grid.

“Nick has been a key part of Enstone for almost 20 years," said Abiteboul.

“His passion for the team has never wavered, despite experiencing some extremely challenging times.

“More recently, his commitment, technical insight and enthusiasm have inspired us to move from the back of the grid to the front of the midfield.

“We would like to sincerely thank Nick for everything and wish him every success in the next stage of his career."

Chester responded: “I have enjoyed 19 years in a team with great spirit and have worked with an incredibly loyal and talented group of people.

“I am looking forward to a new challenge and wish everybody in the team all the best for the future."

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