Williams test driver Susie Wolff experienced his first ever laps in a Formula 1 car, taking to the Silverstone circuit in a 2011 Williams FW33 as part of the team’s ‘partner day’ celebrations.
The 29-year-old, a DTM veteran with Mercedes, joined the team in April as its development driver. In her role with the team, she has carried out various simulator tests and also performed a host of media duties for the Grove-based squad.
Wolff – the wife of Williams shareholder Charles ‘Toto’ Wolff – completed two fifty-kilometre runs around the ‘International’ version of the Silverstone circuit (the southern loop, which excludes the Luffied complex, old start/finish section, Copse and Becketts).
The conditions – which started off damp before drying – gave her the chance to sample Pirelli’s full wet and soft-compound dry-weather tyres, albeit running on promotional sets derived from last year’s tyre allocations.
“It was incredible to experience a Formula One car for the first time,” she said afterwards.
“I’ve done a lot of simulator work since I joined the team but nothing compares to the exhilaration of driving the real thing.
“The conditions were a little tricky as it was quite damp at the beginning of the run but the track soon dried out. The team also did a fantastic job preparing me for today, giving me all the information I needed so that I was always in control.”
Williams’ regular drivers Pastor Maldonado and Bruno Senna were also in action. The former took Damon Hill’s 1996 Championship-winning Williams FW18, while Senna took Keke Rosberg’s 1982 title-winning Williams FW08 for a spin.
As part of the team’s chassis supply agreement with the FIA Formula 2 Championship, the outfit will give this year’s champion, Luciano Bacheta, a test outing in this year’s FW34.