Image via @WilliamsRacing

Mansell's FW14B highlights Williams 40th anniversary event

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The first running of the iconic FW18B since it took Nigel Mansell to the title in 1992 was the highlight as Williams commemorated 40 years in Formula 1 on Friday.

Founder Sir Frank Williams' entry with Patrick Neve behind the wheel at the 1977 Spanish Grand Prix, would mark the start of a journey that has seen a total of 114 race wins and 16 world championships, the last coming in 1997 with Jacques Villeneuve.

To celebrate the milestone, the team held an event at Silverstone featuring a number of classic cars and some of the British team's most well-known drivers including the aforementioned Mansell, 1996 champion Damon Hill, current world champion Nico Rosberg, who debuted with Williams in 2006, David Coulthard and Mark Webber.

"I'm buzzing, it's been a brilliant day," current team boss Claire Williams said. "It's brilliant to have so many fans here to share our 40th anniversary. I couldn't be prouder."

"We wanted to get the FW14B out, it hasn't run since 1992, it was tricky to, and it's such a complex car anyway.

"The people who engineered at the time or who worked on the engine aren't around anymore - so it's been a piece of work to make it happen.

"Seeing the span of cars over the years and the changing technologies and the changing sound, the difference is phenomenal.”

Current driver Felipe Massa was also at the venue for next month's British Grand Prix and drove another of Williams' most iconic designs, the six-wheeled FW08B

"It was good fun to drive. I had a misfire so I had to stop, but it was really nice, a good feeling,” the Brazilian said after hitting the track.

"When you're driving, you don't think you have six wheels, but it looks nice, it's got good grip and even the gearbox was easier than I expected.”

 

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