Villeneuve Williams bashing has grown 'irritating'
Claire Williams says Jacques Villeneuve's criticism of the Williams team has grown to be "irritating" as the Canadian continues to take shots at his former employers. Villeneuve remains Williams last drivers' champion, but has had no sympathy for their recent plight in Formula 1.
Williams finished bottom of the constructors' championship last season after enduring one of their worst seasons of all time, but 2019 looks to be even worse.
George Russell and Robert Kubica have brought up the rear at every race so far this year and Villeneuve recently said the team was "dead" – highlighting the decision to select Claire as deputy team principal as a reason for the slump.
"What I find distinctly irritating is people criticising when they don't know the full story," she told The Telegraph.
"I'm a very honest person. If someone feels that strongly about the situation, then talk to me about it."
Having taken charge of the team since 2013, Williams initially oversaw an upturn in fortunes at the start of the V6 Hybrid era, although things have gone steadily downhill since, and she admits that thoughts have turned to relinquishing her duties, while insisting she remains the right person for the job.
She added: "If your business wasn't performing well, you would be incredibly arrogant not to be introspective.
"I have those internal conversations, but I don't believe my ability to take this team forward is done. I can drive us out of this. If ever I felt my contribution was harmful, then I wouldn't stay on in the job.
"If somebody told me to go back to being the press officer again, I'd be happy with that.
"Being involved is what I love. I don't do it for the pay cheque, you could pay me nothing. Williams has given me so much of my life. I owe it, I feel a responsibility to pay it back."
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