“My confidence is not at its best.” – Nicholas Latifi

After two tough races, in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, Nicholas Latifi was hoping to find some peace of mind in Melbourne, which reminds him so much of his hometown.

Melbourne reminds me a lot of Montreal, because the circuit is in the middle of a park, so close to downtown, and the city itself is like our North American cities, Latifi notes at Radio Canada Sports’ microphone. From an architectural or cultural point of view, it is less European, it is more like home.

The atmosphere, he adds, is very different from what it was two years ago, when we went into a pandemic and the weekend was canceled at the last minute. There, we’re coming out of the pandemic, and the stands are filling up fast. The public is eager to see F1 back on the track. It will be the same in Montreal.

This is also due to the pandemic that the Canadian driver has not yet had the opportunity to compete in the F1 Grand Prix in Melbourne. The street circuit in Albert Park has been modified in several places for the 2022 edition. A total of seven corners as well as the pit lane have been reworked (widened by two metres).

Latifi thinks circuit changes should improve the show, but I don’t expect miracles in general for our team. It will be quite similar to the last two races. It’s no secret that we lack performance.

F1 drives a single seat on a track.  We see the pilot's left hand above the steering wheel.

Nicholas Latifi in Australia

Photo: Getty Images / Clive Mason

We’re still trying to identify weaknesses in the single seat, Al Kindi identifies. The cars are so different this season that I have to adapt to my driving, but at the moment we are stuck with our single seat car, so we are trying to work on the settings and get the most out of this car.

We expect changes to the car that will come from the factory. »

Quote from Williams Formula 1 driver Nicholas Latifi

After finishing 16th in Bahrain, and retiring (hitting the ring) in Saudi Arabia, he didn’t need that clash with Lance Stroll in Saturday’s qualifier. How will FW44 behave on Sunday? Will Latify have complete confidence in his mechanism to speed up the Albert Park crossing? He doesn’t even think about scoring the points reserved for the top ten.

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The Thai driver also had his share of worries on Saturday. He ran out of gas at the end of the first quarter, when he had hit #16 the fastest and was already taken out. Not being able to supply the FIA ​​with the regulatory liter of gasoline, the team was disqualified, but Albon was allowed to start, so he will start from the back row of the grid, just behind Latif.

The Canadian at best hopes to defeat his teammate. Show the team that they can contribute something.

beat Alex [cette saison]Latifi says, it will definitely help me. 100%. I would be lying to say otherwise. I am sure he would say the same. Our place in the team always depends on performance and results, and at the moment we are not in a position to do well. For the team, it’s easier to judge performance when the driver can express himself, when the car allows him to score points, to fight in the peloton.

Since the controversy in Abu Dhabi, and the hostile reactions to him from fans, Nicholas Latifi has had to arm his shell, he knows that criticism comes from everywhere, transmitted by social networks.

The F1 car runs on the track, passing hurdles in a curve on the left.

Nicholas Latifi in Australia

Photo: Getty Images / Robert Cianflone

He now has to show Williams that he deserves to be behind the wheel in 2023.

I have to do my best to get the most out of my car, and I’m going to go one race at a time, Torontonian explains. My goal is to stay with Williams, I feel good here and there are still about twenty races left so I have to keep taming the singles seat to increase my level of confidence behind the wheel which hasn’t been at its best in the first two races of the season.

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If I can manage it, I know it will be better then, he hopes. I’m not thinking about the result at the moment, because we are not in a position to score points, but if the opportunity presents itself, we will have to seize it.

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