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Williams co-founder Patrick Head has lashed out at team chairman Adam Parr after he claimed the veteran is to retire later this year.
Speaking at a press conference today at which the team revealed a major reorganisation of its technical department, Parr announced that Head is to retire later in the year.
"Patrick has made it clear that he will be retiring this year," he told reporters, before adding, somewhat patronisingly. "That's nothing to do with the restructuring, it's just the fact that he's turning 65 and had already signalled that it's time for him to move on to his next set of interests in life."
However, according to the Guardian, Head is furious at Parr's claim, telling the British newspaper: "He wasn't in a position to make that statement. My plans are not in the public domain and they will only be when I make my own statement later in the year."
Meanwhile, as Sam Michael and Jon Tomlinson fall on their swords following the Grove outfit's worst start to a season in living memory, a source told the newspaper that the two are nothing less than scapegoats.
"There are a few things wrong at Williams at the moment and Sam and Jon are little more than scapegoats," said the source. "Sam is a good man who was overworked, though he probably should have appointed better people around him."
There are many within the paddock, even within Williams, who believe that while a change was needed, many of the team's current problems appear to coincide with Parr's arrival at Grove. Indeed, a media claim that the Englishman offered his resignation (if true) would suggest that Parr himself possibly realised that there is a problem.
While Head, who is not known for his patience when it comes to suffering fools, looks to be shaping up for a major row with his team's chairman, it is worth remembering that the story of his retirement first arose when preparations for the Grove outfit's float were being made.
While the thought of Head taking Parr to task might prove a source of entertainment for many within the paddock, and even former team members, it is difficult to imagine how it will affect morale ahead of this weekend's Turkish Grand Prix, not only in terms of the team but also its shareholders who have already seen the value of the team plummet by a third in just eight weeks.
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