Williams appoint Simon Roberts from McLaren

Williams have appointed Simon Roberts to the newly-created position of managing director for Formula One.

Roberts, who joins from McLaren, is due to take up his new role from June 1, the day after the initial furlough period announced by Williams last month is due to end.

Roberts has extensive experience in Formula One, having joined McLaren as operations director and general manager in 2003 and spent time at Force India before returning to McLaren as chief operating officer.

Deputy team principal Claire Williams said: “Simon will bring enormous experience and knowledge to the Williams team, and we are delighted that he is joining us when we head back to work after this long enforced F1 shutdown.

“He will lead a highly talented team that’s looking forward to designing and developing the next generation of Williams F1 cars.”

The announcement comes in the wake of a hugely disappointing 2019 season for Williams.

The team has a number of staff on furlough and senior management have joined drivers George Russell and Nicholas Latifi in taking pay-cuts while racing is suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Formula One is hoping to be able to begin the 2020 season in July and is looking at plans to host back-to-back races at the Red Bull Ring in Austria.