A report has emerged claiming Sergey Sirotkin’s backers did not pay in full for its sponsorship of the struggling backmarker Williams in 2018 according to a Russian source at Moscow-based Echo Moskwa radio.

Last year, Sirotkin raced for Williams – with backing by SMP Bank’s motorsport programme SMP Racing – which coincided with the once mightiest team’s downfall to by far the worst of the worst team on the grid.

“They paid only part of the amount,” the source, Marina Maksimowa, told Sportowe Fakty.

Williams is still struggling with its financial backing in 2019. Robert Kubica’s sponsor PKN Orlen has been publicly critical of the team and is set to leave along with the Polish driver.

As for SMP Racing, the Russian source continued: “They decided that Williams’ results were unsatisfactory and that they should not receive any more money.”

The sponsor’s dissatisfaction is apparently why Sirotkin left Williams at the end of the season.

“Sirotkin wanted to continue, even with Williams,” Maksimowa said. “But they [SMP Racing] told him that there would be no more money.”

The Grove outfit, with 16 Formula 1 titles and 114 Grand Prix victories on their resume, have become the laughing stock of the paddock as they sink lower into oblivion of hopelessness.

Some predict they will not survive much longer in their current guise and with the ‘leadership’ in place at the team there is little hope of a quick-fix or any solution to the crisis that engulfs the team Sir Frank Williams built.

Big Question: How long will Williams last in F1 at their current rate of rubbishness?

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