‘Something not quite right’: Latifi blames the car for his woeful pace

Nicholas Latifi is yet to get any points on the board so far in 2022.

Williams driver Nicholas Latifi does not understand why the pace of the car has been so poor in the last few rounds, and is keen to find some solutions.

Having been comprehensively out-performed by team-mate Alex Albon in the opening five rounds of the season, but seemed to be more on top of his Williams in Spain, finishing ahead of the Thai-Briton for the first time this year.

Despite a mistake on the formation lap in Monaco, the Canadian was in front of Albon again before the 26-year-old retired with a mechanical issue, but the last two rounds in Baku and his home race in Montreal have not been kind to him.

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He ended as the last of the classified runners in Baku, picking up two time penalties to add to his troubles, and ended up 16th in Canada after Kevin Magnussen fell down the order on dead tyres following a late Safety Car.

The 27-year-old was significantly adrift of Albon’s pace in both weekends but, nonetheless, he enjoyed finally being able to contest his home race after it was cancelled in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I mean, obviously, the overall experience of the weekend has been pretty special,” he said.

“It’s great to finally have that first home race and the support I felt – family, friends, all the fans in the grandstands – has been amazing.”

However, under pressure for his 2023 drive due to his results, Latifi is trying to figure out how to find the performance that his team-mate has extracted.

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“In terms of the actual on-track stuff, there was nothing really enjoyable about the race, we were just lacking a lot of pace,” he explained.

“We have to try and understand why, because at the moment there’s no answers.

“Low fuel, high fuel, the pace is just not there, so we have two weeks now to try and do a bit of analysis because it’s not just this race, it’s even from the previous ones. 

“There’s something not quite right there, we’ll see what we can find.”

There have been rumours circulating around the six-time Formula 2 race winner that he is set to be replaced by Alpine reserve Oscar Piastri.

The reigning F2 champion is set to participate in FP1 in France for the French side who are keen to get him into the pinnacle of motorsport next year, but Williams boss Jost Capito remains loyal to Latifi until the expiry of his current deal at the end of 2022.

“Oscar for sure is ready to go into F1, I think he’s one on the list for sure,” said the German.

“We have got contracts for this year we stick to our drivers and we are convinced Nicky will find the confidence in the car through the season and his results will be better.”

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Albon has brought home Williams’ only points this year when he finished in the top 10 in Melbourne and Miami.

His three points have not been enough to lift them off the foot of the Constructors’ Championship, and they are 12 points behind ninth-placed Haas.