Logan Sargeant is one of several drivers without a contract for 2024, but Williams (at least for now) are happy with his development so far. James Vowles has provided some insight into the team’s evaluation process, helping address some of the recent F1 news stories surrounding the American driver.
Sargeant was something of a surprise entry on the 2023 grid, with Williams originally planning to promote the 22-year-old after two seasons. However, his impressive performances in Formula 2 accelerated this plan.
The Grove-based team has been quite competitive this season, evidenced most clearly by Alex Albon – whose points have put the team into 7th in the standings.
It was expected that Albon would lead Williams whilst Sargeant acclimatised to F1, although the Thai driver’s performances have exceeded expectations.
Simultaneously, there have been concerns about the gap between the Williams pairing being too large.
However, team boss James Vowles has no intention of putting Sargeant under any additional pressure:
“I’ve definitely noticed the improvement,” Vowles told The Race.
“Logan was basically pulled out of F2, thrown into our F1 car and said, ‘Good luck, off you go, test at Bahrain for a day and a half – and then we’ll see you on the other side’.
“And you could see sparks happening, is how I’d describe it. There were sparks that happened, but it never came together as a complete package.
“It needed consistency. And that’s just someone that’s near the limit, but sometimes pushing up and sometimes just not knowing that limit is.”
Although Vowles is yet to complete a year at the helm of Williams, it seems clear that Sargeant will be given more tolerance than drivers elsewhere on the grid.
With that said, the only rookie in F1 (after De Vries’ exit) must convince Williams he is worth further investing in.
Author: Jaden Diaz-Ndisang