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Williams slammed over Abu Dhabi test plans

Williams slammed over Abu Dhabi test plans
© Reuters
An F1 commentator has slammed Williams' plans for the post-grand prix Abu Dhabi test this week.

An F1 commentator has slammed Williams' plans for the post-grand prix Abu Dhabi test this week.

The struggling British team has announced that while George Russell and Nicholas Latifi will each have only half a day at the wheel, Israeli driver Roy Nissany will get a full day in total.

"The test is only for two days," Alexei Popov, who commentates for Match TV, said.

"Russell has only done one season and Latifi has only done six Fridays. But they will only get half a day because Mr Nissany is bringing the money.

"Are they crazy?" Popov added. "Their last world champion, Jacques Villeneuve, is banned from their motorhome, but for what? Being honest?"

Indeed, 1997 title winner Villeneuve has regularly criticised Williams for the way the team and company is run these days.

"Are you guys a racing team or a business?" Popov said, referring to Williams.

"McLaren is also a big business, producing a lot of road cars. They may not have reached the reputation of a Ferrari or a Porsche, but they are on the right track.

"Williams seems unclear about what they are doing. They sell engineering services, they are in Qatar, then every year they publish a balance sheet and say they are in the black.

"Well, the money is divided up, that's all," he charged.

Popov is even critical of Williams' decision to sign up Nicholas Latifi for 2020. The Canadian's father is the billionaire McLaren shareholder Michael Latifi.

"I have nothing against Latifi," he said. "He may be a good guy. But the guy was in Formula 2 for four years, did not win and he barely rescued second place in the end."

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Olympic medal table header
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JapanJapan124521
ChinaChina115824
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Today's Olympic highlights header

Thursday's key events


ROWING
· Comeback queen and super-mum Helen Glover goes for her third Olympic gold alongside Polly Swann in the women's pair final (1.30am)
· There is also a medal on offer for GB pair Emily Craig and Imogen Grant in the lightweight women's double scull final (2.10am)

SWIMMING
· As second-fastest qualifier for the final, Team GB's James Wilby is among the medal contenders in the men's 200m breaststroke (2.44am)
· Alys Thomas takes part in the women's 200m butterfly final, although he faces a difficult task to challenge for the medals (3.28am)
· Caeleb Dressel of the USA has been touted by some as the successor to Michael Phelps, and he has the chance to notch up a fourth Olympic gold in the men's 100m freestyle final (3.37am)

RUGBY SEVENS
· After Team GB's men narrowly missed out on a medal, the women get their campaign underway against the Russian Olympic Committee (3am) and New Zealand (10.30am)

HOCKEY
· It is a Great Britain vs. Netherlands double-header, with the men up first in Pool B (4.15am)
· Most eyes will be on the women's showdown between the two nations, though, as Netherlands - the world's best team - look to gain revenge on GB for defeat in the 2016 Olympic final (11am)

CANOE SLALOM
· Mallory Franklin takes part in the women's canoe semi-final, and will hope to do enough to qualify for the final later in the day (6am-8.45am)

ARTISTIC GYMNASTICS
· With Simone Biles now out of the women's all-around final, the competition has been blown wide open. Team GB twins Jessica and Jennifer Gadirova are among those taking part (11.50am-2.05pm)

> Today's schedule in full
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