Williams signs Nissany as test driver

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The Williams Formula One team has named Roy Nissany as its test driver for the upcoming season.

The Israeli racing driver took part in a post-season test with the team last year and has now secured a deal that will see him take part in three Friday practice sessions in 2020. He will also work in the team's simulator and across the factory's departments between races to help his development.

As part of the deal, the Israel Start-Up logo will appear on the Williams at race weekends when Nissany is driving the car.

"I am thrilled to become Official Test Driver for ROKiT Williams Racing. This is also a landmark for motorsport in Israel. When I tested for the team in Abu Dhabi in December, I instantly felt comfortable in the car and part of the team. The experience that I will gain this year, immersing myself with Williams will prove invaluable and I'm looking forward to getting started, both on and off the track."

Nissany raced in the Formula 2 championship in 2018, but his career CV lacks highlights, with a fourth-place finish in the 2016 World Series Formula V8 3.5 championship his standout achievement so far. He will return to the F2 grid this year, which he will combine with his work with Williams.

Williams finished last in the championship in 2019 with just one point from 21 races and have lost some prominent sponsors, with Unilever switching to McLaren and Polish oil company PKN ORLEN following Robert Kubica to Alfa Romeo. The proudly independent team, winners of nine constructors' titles and seven drivers' crowns between 1980 and 1997, have tumbled down the standings and scored just eight points from the last two seasons. Their last race win was in 2012.

They now have the least experienced driver line-up with Canadian Nicholas Latifi, the only rookie on the grid, alongside highly-rated Mercedes-backed youngster George Russell who debuted last year and Nissany as test driver.

"It is a pleasure to welcome Roy Nissany to ROKiT Williams Racing in the role of our official test driver," deputy team principal Claire Williams said. "Roy demonstrated his capabilities driving in the post-season Abu Dhabi test last year and we were extremely impressed with what he could do in a short space of time. He is a hard-working individual who we are excited to be working with this year."

Nissany follows in the footsteps of his father, Chanoch, who tested F1 cars for Jordan and Minardi in the mid-2000s.