There’s so much to celebrate during the British Grand Prix this year.
First, it is the first home crowd race for one of its drivers: George Russel- also the current Formula Two champion; second, it is Williams golden anniversary — the longest running racing team in the Formula One history; and lastly, Founder and Team Principal Sir Frank Williams was present. A rare treat, he celebrated in style refusing to miss even a tad bit of fun.
The current five-time world champ, Team Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton took the other team principal for a hot lap. It was a heart-warming event for both gentlemen as they are legendary in their own rights. We saw the older Briton getting impatient at the beginning, anxious that he might have been snubbed by the five-time champ, wondering if he was going to ever show up.
But as soon as the young Briton hopped in the Mercedes, strapped himself, the older Brit just wouldn’t stop throwing jokes at him, a reminder to the audience as to why he is in the business in the first place, why he never stopped, and why he’s here to stay.
During the drive, we could hear the former Formula One pilot exclaiming how the car would be very happy to get rid of the young Brit as soon as they are done as he outperforms the car. But the most touching part was that despite the advise of not driving fast, Hamilton drove speedily to the 77 year old man’s delights and even extended another lap, which was concluded in a donut.
The infamous video
One has to see the video to actually feel the beautiful exchange of emotions between the two extreme generations, united by their passion in Formula One racing, who are extraordinary in their own fields.
An unusual treat
Williams hospitality celebrated with a high tea during its weekend celebration and concluded with a dinner with the team, their families and friends as well as sponsors and partners. To learn more about Sir Frank’s 50 years of repair to success, read here.
Williams was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth in 1986, and later received a knighthood in 1999. He was made a Knight of the Legion of Honour by France due to his work on Renault F1’s engines. He also received the Wheatcroft Trophy in 2008 for his significant contributions to motorsports. In 2010, he was awarded the Helen Rollason Award for outstanding achievement in the face of adversity at the BBC Sports Personality of the Year awards. In 2012, a new road in Didcot, Oxfordshire, was named the “Sir Frank Williams Avenue.”
Who is Claire Williams?
Claire, Sir Frank’s daughter and deputy team principal of the racing team, added a heartfelt compliment to Hamilton before they drove off, expressing her wishes to one day join the team in hopes to change its current standing.
Claire has been involved in the team as early as 2002 as its communications officer. But prior to joining her father in the business, she was Silverstone Racing Circuit’s press officer. Ten years later, Sir Frank stepped down from the Williams board, and Claire became the Williams family representative on the board. In 2013, she was appointed deputy team principal of the Williams F1 racing team, where she is responsible for marketing, communications and the commercial aspects of the team’s business.
In 2016, Claire was appointed officer of the Order of the British Empire. An honour she was awarded for her exceptional achievement in the Formula One Racing.