Paddy Lowe joins Williams – Leaving Mercedes Without a Driver or a Technical Director

Ryan Ashenhurst
Ryan Ashenhurst
Ryan Ashenhurst
Contributor

Paddy Lowe has left Mercedes and rejoined the Williams team with Valtteri Bottas expected to go the other way and partner Hamilton next season. Some publications are suggesting that Lowe’s move is part of the deal with Bottas.

Lowe has played a massive part in Mercedes’ success in the V6 era and his position will be a tough one to refill, with new rumours of James Allison leaving Ferrari to take on the technical director vacancy at the Silver Arrows team recirculating.

BUDAPEST, HUNGARY - JULY 24:  Paddy Lowe of Mercedes and Great Britain during the Formula One Grand Prix of Hungary at Hungaroring on July 24, 2016 in Budapest, Hungary.  (Photo by Peter J Fox/Getty Images)
BUDAPEST, HUNGARY – JULY 24: Paddy Lowe of Mercedes and Great Britain during the Formula One Grand Prix of Hungary at Hungaroring on July 24, 2016 in Budapest, Hungary. (Photo by Peter J Fox/Getty Images)

His technical leadership at Mercedes over three years has realised an incredible statistic. The three Mercedes cars he has spearheaded in creating have won just over 86% of the races over three seasons. This announcement is expected to speed up the process of Mercedes finally confirming Bottas, allowing Williams to officially confirm Felipe Massa’s return too.

SEE ALSO: That time Ross Brawn raged against the Mercedes top brass

Lowe started his career at Williams in 1987 and stuck with the team for six years, overseeing the innovative electronics revolution that occurred at the team before making the switch to McLaren. He spent two decades at the famous Woking team during their massively competitive spell before joining Mercedes in 2013.

His arrival at the Mercedes team caused the eventual departure of Ross Brawn. Now, he finds himself back at Williams at a time in which the white Martini-liveried team are hoping to rekindle the podium-claiming form that they enjoyed in 2014 and 2015.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 20: Valtteri Bottas of Finland drives the (77) Williams Martini Racing Williams FW38 Mercedes PU106C Hybrid turbo with Jolyon Palmer of Great Britain drives the (30) Renault Sport Formula One Team Renault RS16 Renault RE16 turbo, Jenson Button of Great Britain drives the (22) McLaren Honda Formula 1 Team McLaren MP4-31 Honda RA616H Hybrid turbo, and Sergio Perez of Mexico drives the (11) Sahara Force India F1 Team VJM09 Mercedes PU106C Hybrid turbo behind on track during the Australian Formula One Grand Prix at Albert Park on March 20, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – MARCH 20: Valtteri Bottas of Finland drives the (77) Williams Martini Racing Williams FW38 Mercedes PU106C Hybrid turbo with Jolyon Palmer of Great Britain drives the (30) Renault Sport Formula One Team Renault RS16 Renault RE16 turbo, Jenson Button of Great Britain drives the (22) McLaren Honda Formula 1 Team McLaren MP4-31 Honda RA616H Hybrid turbo, and Sergio Perez of Mexico drives the (11) Sahara Force India F1 Team VJM09 Mercedes PU106C Hybrid turbo behind on track during the Australian Formula One Grand Prix at Albert Park on March 20, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)

Given that the teams have already locked down their designs for next season, Paddy Lowe will probably play a role in making key decision on the heavy influx on in-season upgrades expected. It leaves the World Champions currently without a driver and a technical director, which seems alarming until you realise who we are talking about. Mercedes will surely confirm Bottas in the next few days, and a technical lead announcement can’t be too far off either.

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