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Williams confirm ex-Mercedes man as new F1 team principal

Williams have announced that former Mercedes Strategy Director James Vowles will be their new Team Principal ahead of the 2023 season.

Williams have confirmed that James Vowles will take over the position of Team Principal from the 2023 season onwards. As one of the key members of the Brackley-based team, Vowles was part of the team's transition from British American Racing through to Honda, Brawn GP and finally Mercedes. The Briton was an integral part of Brawn GP's remarkable title-winning season of 2009, as well as the Mercedes dominance in the turbo-hybrid era. Vowles will officially join Williams in his new role on 20th February, ending a stint at the Brackley team that exceeded 20 years. The news comes around one month after the team confirmed the departure of both Team Principal and CEO Jost Capito and Technical Director Francois-Xavier Demaison . RacingNews365 understands that Capito's contract was due to expire in March, but the team's owners wanting to address the potential leadership switch ahead of time. The appointment of the new Technical Director, following the exit of FX Demaison, will follow in due course.

Vowles reacts to Williams appointment

Vowles had spent the previous four years as Mercedes strategy director, and expressed his delight at joining a Formula 1 "icon". "I cannot wait to start with Williams Racing. It's an honour to join a team with such an incredibly rich heritage," Vowles explained. "The team is an icon of our sport, one I greatly respect, and I am very much looking forward to the challenge. Mercedes have been hugely supportive on my journey, and we part on excellent terms after over 20 years of working in Brackley. "I am grateful for everything Toto [Wolff] and the team have provided, and it has been such a special experience to journey together through failure and success. "Williams Racing have placed their faith and trust in me, and I will do the same in return. Williams has tremendous potential, and our journey together starts in a matter of weeks." Matthew Savage, Chairman of Williams' owners, Dorilton Capital, added that Vowles had "been a key part of some of the most impressive feats in the sport over the past 15 years, [and] as we continue our relentless pursuit for results, we believe that the appointment of James reinforces our dedication to ensuring we have energetic, experienced, and strong leadership as we move into the next phase of transforming Williams Racing."

RESULTS 2024 F1 Monaco Grand Prix - Free Practice 1