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Horner Case Vowles Aims to 'Remedy' Similar Issues

Vowles Targets Solutions for F1 Culture Issues

06/02/2024

Horner Case: Vowles Aims to ‘Remedy’ Similar Issues. Williams F1 Director Comments Cautiously

As allegations of misconduct against Christian Horner have been the focal point of F1 discussions since yesterday, weakening the British individual’s standing within Red Bull, James Vowles, the head of Williams, remains circumspect, detailing how he strives to prevent such issues within his team.

“These allegations are just that, allegations,” Vowles stated to Bloomberg. “I’m apprehensive about not fully understanding what lies behind them and the severity of what occurred. All I can say is, were something like this to happen in our company, we would provide our full support to remedy the situation and ensure our culture is welcoming to everyone.”

“I believe it means we all need to take a hard look at ourselves and make sure we’re asking the right questions internally and acting in a way we can be proud of, not just today, but ten years down the line.”

Vowles applauds the evolving culture in Formula 1, with inclusion and diversity as cornerstones, moving away from a problematic model: “The sport itself, 20 years ago, was undeniably male-dominated.”

“If you had asked me what made up a team back then, it would have been white, likely male, probably in their 40s… something along those lines. That’s changing, and it’s only positive that this change is happening.”

“I can only control what happens within Williams and what I can do in this environment is to open everyone’s eyes to how we need to be because the best ideas don’t come from a closed group of individuals, but from diversity. The best ideas come from diversity.”

Vowles Understands Hamilton’s Desire to Join Ferrari

Lewis Hamilton’s move to Ferrari for 2025 wasn’t a surprise to James Vowles, his former strategy chief at Mercedes F1, now director at Williams.

Speaking to the media at the Williams season launch in New York, Vowles shared his thoughts on Hamilton’s shock transfer desire before the end of his contract signed less than 6 months ago.

“Lewis’s choice, yes I can say the timing was a surprise. But not his wish and desire to be in a Ferrari at some point in his career.”

“I think most world champions have been there or want to be there.”

“Because Ferrari is a force of nature, always the most titled team in Formula 1. It remains legendary, and that cannot be ignored.”

Vowles added that Hamilton’s willingness to step out of his comfort zone is indicative of the high-level athlete he is.

“It provides an opportunity to really challenge oneself. That’s the hardest thing to do. For every human being in the world, moving from a place where they’re comfortable to where they’re not… it challenges you and pushes you to extend your limits, and that’s very much Lewis.”

“So, him doing it, it will be good for the sport, good for Lewis, as he will learn from it and challenge himself.”

While his former team is now without a world champion driver in its duo for the first time since its return to Formula 1 in 2010, Vowles has no doubt that Mercedes would find the right person to move forward.

“It’s not good for Mercedes in the short term, that’s true. But, actually, I think you’re going to see that they’ll come out just fine due to their position in negotiations with drivers, and thus they will come back stronger. So, in the end, it’s a good thing in the long term.”

Horner Case: Vowles Aims to ‘Remedy’ Similar Issues. Williams F1 Director Comments Cautiously. As allegations of misconduct against Christian. Horner Case: Vowles Aims to ‘Remedy’ Similar Issues. Williams F1 Director Comments Cautiously. As allegations of misconduct against Christian

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