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Thread: Bench Racing: 2009 Formula One Thread

  1. #31
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    16 February 2009

    F1 News


    crash.net: Klien, BMW lead way as progress finally made in Bahrain


    formula1.com: Ferrari, BMW Sauber, Toyota testing again in Bahrain


    f1-live.com: Lauda has no interest in F1 foray


    Formula 1 Team News

    BMW Sauber F1[/url][/url]
    BMW Sauber F1 Team - Test in Bahrain - Week two/Day one
    02-16-2009 Press Release


    Test in Bahrain.



    February 16th 19th 2009

    Week two / Day one Monday


    Weather conditions: Sunny all day.

    Temperature: Air: 20 28 ??C, Track: 22 35 ??C

    Number of drivers participating: 3 from 3 teams

    Fastest lap overall: Christian Klien (BMW Sauber F1 Team) 1:32.544 min

    Circuit length: 5.412 km


    Christian Klien
    Chassis / engine: BMW Sauber F1.09-02 / BMW 86/9
    Test kilometres today: 709 (131 laps)
    Fastest lap: 1:32.544 min


    Programme:
    On the first of this weeks four days of testing in Bahrain the BMW Sauber F1.09 completed a total of 709 kms (131 laps). In perfect weather conditions Christian Klien worked on the mechanical and aero set-up of the car, as well as trying different tyre compounds. He concluded todays session by doing several start simulations.

    ǣToday was a very productive day, Klien said. ǣWe collected a lot of data and I even did a long run at the end of the session. Again we didnt have a single technical problem, which is very encouraging.



    What comes next:
    The BMW Sauber F1 Team will continue testing in Bahrain for three more days. From tomorrow Nick Heidfeld will take over driving duties.

    Understanding Forumula One: Factory Hinwil Atrium



    AT&T Williams


    f1network.net: Williams F1 2009 facts and stats


    f1complete.com: No KERS for Williams until June



    [url=http://www.ferrariworld.com/FWorld/fw/index.jsp?jump=FERRARI/WORLD/NEWS/PRESS-OFFICE&language=en]Ferrari[url]



    Force India F1


    f1netwrok.net: Two weeks before the action starts


    Honda, A.K.A. ???


    corrieredellosport.it: translated Honda ready to get back into the race


    telegraph.co.uk: Honda deny asking for government handout


    telegraph.co.uk: Bruno Senna has not joined Honda


    This rumor continues even though there are legal reasons it isnt suppose to be possible.
    f1network.net: Ecclestone helping out at Honda?


    ING Reanult


    I have been waiting for this for some time
    reuters.com: Renault say cost cuets will theam in F1s Renault team


    bbc.co.uk: Global crisis hit Renault

    formula1.com: Q&A Ranaults Bob Bell




    McLaren




    Red Bull Racing



    Toro Rosso



    [url=http://www.toyota-f1.com/en/]Toyota F1[url]



    USF1


    autosport.com: USF1 interested in testing Patrick


    paddocktalk.com: Danica Patrick to formula 1ǪSeriously???

  2. #32
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    17 February

    F1 News

    Formula 1 Team News

    BMW Sauber F1[/url]

    BMW Sauber F1 Team - Test in Bahrain - Week two/Day two
    02-17-2009 Press Release


    Test in Bahrain.


    February 16th – 19th 2009

    Week two / Day two – Tuesday


    Weather conditions: Sunny in morning, hazy in the afternoon.

    Temperature: Air: 20 – 29 ??C, Track: 21 – 35 ??C

    Number of drivers participating: 3 from 3 teams

    Fastest lap overall: Kimi Raikk?nen (Scuderia Ferrari) 1:32.102 min

    Circuit length: 5.412 km


    Nick Heidfeld
    Chassis / engine: BMW Sauber F1.09-02 / BMW 86/9
    Test kilometres today: 563 (104 laps)
    Fastest lap: 1:32.585 min


    Programme:
    Despite the weather not being as perfect as yesterday, the BMW Sauber F1 Team continued with development work on the F1.09 car. Nick Heidfeld concentrated on the mechanical set-up, trying various specifications of dampers and torsion bars. He also did a couple of practice starts in the morning and at the end of the session.

    “Today I drove the new BMW Sauber F1.09 in warm weather conditions for the first time, so the most important thing for me was to learn more about the general balance of the car”, Heidfeld said after completing xxxx laps. “Overall it was a good day because I tried a lot of different set-up solutions. I already feel happy about how the car reacts to changes.”

    In the morning the car stopped on the track when a standard kill switch accidentally cut off the main electronic control unit and engaged the automatic fire extinguishing system. With some modifications to the switch linkage – and a cleaned up car – Heidfeld resumed testing.

    What comes next:
    Tomorrow Nick Heidfeld will be at the wheel of the BMW Sauber F1.09 again for another day of testing at Bahrain’s Sakhir circuit.







    autosport.com: Heidfeld encouraged with set-up work


    AT&T Williams


    Ferrari



    Force India F1



    Honda, A.K.A. ???


    grandprix.com: Two bidders for Honda

    grandprix.com: Could it be Virgin?


    corrieredellsport.it translated: Honda, offered by owner of Virgin



    ING Reanult

    crash.net: Renault admits 63 jobs are on the line


    McLaren


    autosport.com: Raikkonen tops test despite KERS scare


    Red Bull Racing



    Toro Rosso



    Toyota F1



    USF1

  3. #33
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    F1 News


    correredellosport.it: Circus, the plans of FOTA


    Formula 1 Team News

    Links to the official team sites and team specific stories


    BMW Sauber F1[/url]

    BMW Sauber F1 Team - Test in Bahrain - Week two/Day three
    02-18-2009 Press Release


    Test in Bahrain.



    February 16th 19th 2009

    Week two / Day three Wednesday


    Weather conditions: sunny and fairly windy all day

    Air temperature: 19 22 ??C, track temperature: 20 29 ??C

    Number of drivers participating: 3 from 3 teams

    Fastest lap overall: Timo Glock (Toyota) 1:32.492 min

    Circuit length: 5.412 km


    Nick Heidfeld
    Chassis / engine: BMW Sauber F1.09-02 / BMW 86/9
    Test kilometres today: 444 (82 laps)
    Fastest lap: 1:32.993 min


    Programme:
    Todays testing schedule comprised basic development work with the BMW Sauber F1.09. Nick Heidfeld tried different set-up solutions, did a couple of practice starts and evaluated tyre options. Whereas in the morning everything went according to plan, in the afternoon the car stopped twice on the track due to mechanical problems.

    ǣObviously that cost us some track time, Heidfeld said. ǣBut despite this I managed to run for 444 kilometres and we made good progress with the development of the car. We are still learning the car and have already identified a few areas where we can make improvements.


    What comes next:
    Tomorrow will see the last of a total of eight test days on Bahrains Sakhir circuit. Nick Heidfeld will again be at the wheel of the BMW Sauber F1.09.
    .
    Understanding Forumula 1 Factory Hinwil Autoclaves


    AT&T Williams

    Good sponsor news
    Extended PPG agreement

    Ferrari
    Updates on Sakhir testing

    Force India F1

    Honda, A.K.A. ???

    Isn't this part of what got Max in trouble last year? oops different subject
    bbc.co.uk: Virgin involved in Honda F1 talks

    ING Reanult

    McLaren

    Lewis shows karting support as he revisits his roots

    Red Bull Racing

    Toro Rosso

    Toyota F1

    Bahrain testing Middle Eastern promise

    USF1

  4. #34
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    F1 News

    Video Link
    USF! Team Announcement on Speed TV

    bbc.co.uk: Line drawn under F1 spy scandal

    f1complete.com: Teams to agree 2009 engine rules tweak

    planet-f1.com: Nick New rules will help with overtaking

    Formula 1 Team News

    Links to the official team sites and team specific stories


    BMW Sauber F1

    f1network.net: Insight info of the teams current test performance

    The countdown is on 1/3


    32/3


    3/3


    Wind Tunnel


    Hinwil Truck haul


    Hinwil Clean Room



    AT&T Williams



    Ferrari


    Force India F1

    f1network.com: Force Indias VJM02 busts into life

    Honda, A.K.A. ???

    autosport.com: Honda team future looking good

    telegraph.co.uk: Honda and Jenson Button face uncertain future with buyer hard to find

    f1network.net: Honda F1 to race again!

    ING Reanult




    McLaren


    Red Bull Racing


    Toro Rosso

    Toyota F1


    USF1

    f1-live.com: The USF1 project [will be] presented Tuesday

    paddocktalk.com: Who will drive for USF1?

  5. #35
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    F1 News

    formula1.com: Madin in America a brief history of American Formula 1 teams

    Formula 1 Team News

    Links to the official team sites and team specific stories

    BMW Sauber F1

    f1network.com: Christian Klein a challenge lover.

    AT&T Williams

    reuters.com: RBS to end Williams F1 sponsorship in 2010

    Ferrari

    Force India F1

    Honda, A.K.A. ???

    bbc.co.uk: Ex-Honda team closes on F1 return

    ING Reanult

    McLaren

    Red Bull Racing

    Toro Rosso

    Toyota F1

    USF1

    reuters.com: Stoddart skeptical of U.S. teams chances

    bbc.co.uk: US team plans to enter F1 in 2010

  6. #36
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    F1 News

    fkormula1.com: Green band to distinguish softer tires in 2009

    reuters.com: Return to America still some way off, says Williams

    autosport.com: Unhappy drivers to pay superlicences

    f1complete.com: Max Mosley to visit Rome

    Formula 1 Team News

    Links to the official team sites and team specific stories

    BMW Sauber F1

    AT&T Williams

    Ferrari

    Force India F1

    Honda, A.K.A. ???

    Given the source and the fact that Kawasaki is going to run a one bike team in MotoGP I have to believe this story.
    timesonline.co.uk: EXCLUSIVE Honda saved from the Formula One scrapheap

    ING Reanult

    crash.net: Axe falls on up to 50 jobs at Renault F1

    McLaren

    Red Bull Racing

    redbullracing.com: Spanish Test II

    Toro Rosso

    scuderiatororosso.com: A friendly message to the media

    Toyota F1

    USF1

    crash.net: Busch, AJ open to USF1, Danica and Marco more cautious

  7. #37
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    F1 News

    Press Release
    FIA Formula One World Championship
    27/02/2009

    In view of the difficult economic conditions which continue to affect Formula One sponsors and major car manufacturers, the FIA is preparing radical proposals for 2010.

    If adopted by the World Motor Sport Council, the new regulations will enable a team to compete for a fraction of current budgets but nevertheless field cars which can match those of the established teams.

    These regulations will not affect the established teams which now have stable backing from the major car manufacturers, but will enable new teams to fill the existing vacancies on the grid for 2010 and make it less likely that any team will be forced to leave the Championship.

    The proposals will be submitted to the World Council on 17 March.

    f1network.net: Soft Compounds on the rise

    telegraph.co.uk: Martin Whitmarsh, new team principal at McLaren, calls for better management of Formula One

    f1complete.com: Three F1 teams tested this week

    Formula 1 Team News

    Links to the official team sites and team specific stories

    BMW Sauber F1

    AT&T Williams

    planet-f1.com: Michael others will copy our diffuser design

    AT&T Williams new livery


    Ferrari

    Force India F1

    f1-live.com: National colours for the Force India car

    formula1.com: Force Indias Sutil, Fisichella and Liuzzi on the VJM02

    Force India Launch photos











    Honda, A.K.A. ???

    f1network.com: Announcement due as ex Honda F1 team saved

    PaddockTalk.com rumor section is brimming with Honda rumors

    Details on Honda Buyout???

    Honda Cutting 300 Jobs, B
    Utton slashing salary in half???


    Lifeline for Barrichello???

    ING Reanult

    McLaren

    Red Bull Racing

    Toro Rosso

    Toyota F1

    Toyota has been a rumor mill in and out team. As an engine supplier it is ever more important in the new schemes that F1 is developing but will they pull out after this season as paddocktalk.com says Kaz Nakajima suggests is possible?


    USF1

    USF1 Formula1.com:

    crash.net: F1 hs allure but would NASCAR stars move. [could they cut it?]

    autosport.com: Kyle Busch open to F1

    Exclusive Peter Windsor Interview:
    Part I
    Part II

    Danica Watch St. Petersburg Times

    Danica Patrick was the guest on a talk show promoting the April 5th Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. During the interview she was asked about the USF1 ride rumors that have included her name. From the St. Petersburg Times article on the itnerview:

    Q: So the owners of the new Charlotte-based F1 team floated your nam as a driver candidate. Have you spoken with them? And are you interested?

    A: The first question: No. Am I interested in it? I would never say never, but it wouldnt be something that Id search out. But Id be happy to listen. Listening never hurt anyone. Its interesting, right? My name is out there and Ive been asked how many times about it, and theyve still not called.

    Later in the interview she was asked about NASCAR and played very coy about that as a future option. She did not see that as such a big leap in terms of schedule and the progression of North American driver careers as a jump to F1 would be.

    I hope she remains very cautious about involvement with the USF1 team and F1 for a couple of reasons.

    She is a great generator of press for open wheeled racing in North America. Open wheeled racing would survive her leaving but I think it will weather these tough economic times better if she stays.

    From a personal finance standpoint she would have to weigh what endorsement money would be in the jump and if that would be very short lived. Taking a ride with a new team, new to F1 would turn a bright spotlight on her while putting her under a huge microscope. Combine a bright light with a magnifying glass and you can start a fire or burn up ants. She and USF1 could set the racing world on fire. The reality is that the move to F1 could burn up one of my favorite Indycar drivers career in the process.

    The prospects for the development of this team in the current world of F1 are daunting. Even with the cost savings proposals for F1. As excited as I may be I dont want see a driver I like possibly throw their open wheeled career away to be part of a second tier F1 team racing to beat the Red Bull/Toro Rossi teams or punching it out with Force India and the revived Honda (a.k.a. what?) for the back marker title of the F1 world.

  8. #38
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    Formula 1 Team News

    Testing has begun in Jerez. We often sluff this off but as grandprix.com is quick to point out this is the first time all of the known teams are testing in one place at the same time. This will give some insight into how the grid will stack up with the various changes in car regulations, teams, engine suppliers and KERS.

    Dont take your career change job search to F1 if Max has his way.
    paddoctalk.com: Budget caps to force teams to slash jobs

    In addition to slashing jobs testing time continues to be slashed and McLarens De la Rosa thinks that is a safety issue for the reserves. Under the new rules would Vettel have scored points in his first GP race ever when he stepped in for Kubica after Canada in 2007? Or, would he have been a hazard to himself and the rest of the field?
    autosport.com Test ban unsafe for reserves

    Links to the official team sites and team specific stories

    BMW Sauber F1

    BMW Sauber F1 Team - Test in Jerez - Day one
    03-01-2009 Press Release


    Test in Jerez.



    March 1st 5th 2009

    Day one Sunday


    Weather conditions: Overcast all day, light rain in the afternoon.

    Temperature: Air: 15 18 ??C, Track: 14 19 ??C

    Number of drivers participating: 8 from 8 teams

    Fastest lap overall: Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull Racing) 1:19.055 min

    Circuit length: 4.428 km


    Robert Kubica
    Chassis / engine: BMW Sauber F1.09-03 / BMW 86/9
    Test kilometres today: 209 (47 laps)
    Fastest lap: 1:21.292 min




    Programme:
    For the BMW Sauber F1 Team the main focus of todays programme was to test the 2010 specification tyres. The goal was to give the Bridgestone engineers feedback on next years compounds. Robert Kubica was at the wheel for the first of five days of testing in Jerez. In the morning the team decided to make a precautionary engine change after sensors indicated there was a problem. It then began to drizzle just as Kubica resumed testing. As several parts of the track were wet, the team switched from tyre testing to race start simulations.

    ǣUnfortunately I couldnt drive as many laps as planned. In the afternoon the session was interrupted by five red flags and the changing weather, Robert Kubica said after completing 47 laps. ǣBecause of this I expect a very busy day tomorrow.



    What comes next:
    The BMW Sauber F1 Team will be testing in Jerez until Thursday. Tomorrow and on Tuesday Robert Kubica will be on duty, while for the last two days Nick Heidfeld will take over the BMW Sauber F1.09.

    bmwf1blog.com Day on in Jerez spells a small problem for Kubica
    AT&T Williams - updates

    f1network.com: Back to testing for Williams
    Ferrari - updates

    Force India F1

    formula1.com: Positive first day for new Force India

    Talk about trying to set high expectations. Force India did not score a point and took a very long time to have a car finish a race in 2008.
    formula1.com: Exclusive Fisichella Q&A Force India can trouble midfield in 2009.

    Honda, A.K.A. ???

    crash.net: What should the new Honda F1 team be called

    Assuming there is a deal and they are able to sign sponsors

    crash.net: Emirates denies Honda F1 deal
    ING Renault

    McLaren

    planet-f1.com: De La Rosa explains McLarens slow pace

    Red Bull Racing

    Toro Rosso

    Toyota F1 - updates

    USF1

  9. #39
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    F1 News

    formula1.com: Jerez day two
    formula1.com: Jerez day three
    Formula 1.com Interviews with Sebastian Vettel and Adrian Sutil

    autosport.com: Q&A with Robert Kubica

    Massa on reforming F1
    f1complete.com: Massa wants shorter f1 races

    Does this make sense and would it really save any money? It plays into the idea that increasing engine life is done by reducing rpm and time on the track thus saving money. There would be some savings on expendables such as tires and fuel. No savings on pit crews as they are made up from the mechanics for the teams car pulling that duty.

    The race length is already potentially trimmed by time limit to make it fit into television format. Would further shortening length cost revenues by cutting world wide advertising minutes?

    What do you think? s


    Formula 1 Team News

    Links to the official team sites and team specific stories

    BMW Sauber F1

    BMW Sauber F1 Team - FxPro is new partner.
    03/04/2009

    FxPro is new partner of BMW Sauber F1 Team.
    "Formula One is an ideal platform and BMW the perfect partner."

    Munich/Hinwil, 4th March 2009. The next test in Barcelona this coming week will see the BMW Sauber F1.09 out on track with a brand-new partner on board: the world leading forex broker FxPro will be part of the team's livery with its branding on the highly visible spaces on the front wing and side mirrors. The company's logo will also appear on the drivers' helmets and overalls, as well as the team's clothing, trucks and pit equipment.

    BMW Motorsport Director Mario Theissen: "We are delighted about our new collaboration with FxPro. Particularly in economically challenging times such as the present, it is a great achievement for our BMW Sauber F1 Team and for Formula One to have gained another strong partner."

    Ilya Holeu, Marketing Manager of FxPro, sums up the rationale behind this wide ranging involvement over several years: "In Formula One we see an ideal platform and in BMW the perfect partner to collaborate with at a global level, and at the same time present ourselves in a perfect environment. Internationalism, dynamism and high-tech are attributes of Formula One that seem tailor-made to match FxPro."

    FxPro is an award winning online forex broker specialising in currency pairs, stocks, futures and precious metals. FxPro is a recognised powerhouse and financial partner for traders in Europe, Asia, the Middle East and the Americas, reflecting cutting-edge technology and customer care. The FxPro trade name is owned by EuroOrient Securities and Financial Services Ltd.

    Further information at www.FxPro.com.
    ________________________________________

    BMW Sauber must think we are Jonesing for some track action A lap a Budapest with Robert Kubica from 2008


    AT&T Williams
    Ferrari

    Force India F1

    Honda, A.K.A. ???

    pitpass.com: Mallya admits to giving Honda Mercedes all-clear

    bbc.co.uk: Ex-honda team ready to run F1 car

    ING Renault

    telegraph.co.uk: Rubens Barrichello to retain F1 seat at soon to be renamed Honda team

    grandprix.com: McGory becomes company secretary of Honda Racing F1

    The rumor on most blogs is the deal will be announced Thursday 4 March.

    McLaren

    Red Bull Racing

    Toro Rosso

    Toyota F1

    USF1

  10. #40
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    F1 News

    ing-renaultf1.com: Text of press release FOTAs Roadmap for the Future of Formula One

    When did Nigel become a member of the Grumpy Old Man wing of the MOA?
    telegraph.co.uk: Lewis Hamiltons F1 world title not as credible as mine, says Nigel Mansell

    Is Renault serious or is this posturing for a larger share/ protecting share if Honda deal goes through?
    corrieredellosport.it translated: Renault may leave F1






    Formula 1 Team News Click through to the team sites for their Jerez updates

    Links to the official team sites and team specific stories

    BMW Sauber F1

    BMW Sauber F1 Team - Test in Jerez - Day four
    03-04-2009 Press Release
    Test in Jerez.

    March 1st 5th 2009

    Day four Wednesday

    Weather conditions: Overcast all day, strong winds in the afternoon.

    Temperature: Air: 11 19 ??C, Track: 11 21 ??C

    Number of drivers participating: 8 from 8 teams

    Fastest lap overall: Fernando Alonso (Renault) 1:19.945 min

    Circuit length: 4.428 km

    Nick Heidfeld
    Chassis / engine: BMW Sauber F1.09-03 / BMW 86/9
    Test kilometres today: 439 (99 laps)
    Fastest lap: 1:20.520 min

    Programme:
    Todays work for Nick Heidfeld started with the mechanical set-up of the BMW Sauber F1.09. He also did a so-called run-out of fuel run which resulted in him stopping out on the track. This standard procedure allows the engineers to compare telemetry readings with the cars actual fuel level. After the lunch break Heidfelds main focus switched to tyres and brakes. He also did a couple of race start simulations completing a total of 99 laps.

    ǣThe strong wind affected todays work a little bit, Heidfeld said. ǣNevertheless I was able to work with various tyre compounds and try a lot of different solutions for the cars set-up. That gives me a good base to work on tomorrow.

    What comes next:
    Tomorrow Nick Heidfeld will conclude the BMW Sauber F1 Teams four day test at Jerez.

    AT&T Williams
    Ferrari

    Force India F1

    Honda, A.K.A. ???

    ING Renault

    formula1.com: Jerez day four Alonso back on top

    McLaren

    bbc.co.uk: McLaren face hard work - Hamilton

    Red Bull Racing

    Toro Rosso

    Toyota F1

    USF1

  11. #41
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    BMW PressClub provided this press release of FOTAs roadmap along with more detail and comments from others.

    FOTA'S roadmap for the future of Formula One
    03/05/2009

    Formula One Teams Association (FOTA) reveals initial plans and framework for the future of Formula One at landmark press conference
    GENEVA, 5 MARCH 2009: The Formula One Teams Association (FOTA) today outlined its roadmap for Formula One at a press conference at which senior management figures from all 10 current Formula One teams shared the stage together.

    Setting out its proposed agenda for the evolution of the sport, FOTA unveiled a dynamic package of unanimously agreed proposals which, pending the approval of the FIA, will take effect in 2009 and/or 2010.

    These proposals are aimed at increasing the stability, sustainability, substance and show of Formula One, and have all been developed as a result of rigorous interrogation of a FOTA global audience survey carried out in 17 countries earlier this year. The study canvassed views of existing fans but also, for the first time, drew on insights from a cross-section of general and infrequent followers of the sport, in line with FOTA's stated ambition to broaden as well as to deepen the appeal of Formula One.

    The proposals can be classified under three headings - technical, sporting and commercial - in line with the three working groups inaugurated when FOTA was formed in September 2008. These proposals will ensure the retention of Formula One's unique and essential sporting "DNA", improve the show for all audiences, reduce costs, and increase the value proposition to the major stakeholders.

    Luca di Montezemolo, Chairman of FOTA, said: "This is an unprecedented moment in Formula One history. Above all else, for the first time the teams are unified and steadfast - with a clear, collective vision. Thanks to this unity, all the teams have already managed to make a significant reduction to their costs for 2009. And, while we will continue to compete vigorously on track, we all share one common goal: to work together to improve Formula One by ensuring its stability, sustainability, substance and show for the benefit of our most important stakeholder, namely the consumer. It is with this mindset that we now intend to work hard, with our partners at the FIA and FOM, our shared goal being to optimise the future of Formula One."

    KEY PROPOSALS

    Technical
    2009:
    ▪ More than 100% increase in mileage per engine (eight engines per driver per season)
    ▪ Reduction in wind tunnel and CFD (computational fluid dynamics) usage
    ▪ Engine available at Eur8 million per team per season

    2010:
    ▪ Engine available at Eur5 million per team per season
    ▪ Gearbox available at Eur1.5 million per team per season
    ▪ Standardised KERS (put out to tender, with a target price of Eur1-2 million per team per season)
    ▪ Target a further 50% reduction of the 2009 aerodynamic development spend
    ▪ Specified number of chassis, bodywork and aerodynamic development iterations (homologations) during the season
    ▪ Prohibition of a wide range of exotic, metallic and composite materials
    ▪ Standardised telemetry and radio systems

    Sporting
    2009:
    ▪ Testing reduction (50%)
    ▪ New points-scoring system (12-9-7-5-4-3-2-1), to give greater differentiation/reward to grand prix winners
    ▪ Race starting fuel loads, tire specifications and refuelling data to be made public

    2010:
    ▪ Commitment to recommend new qualifying format
    ▪ Radical new points-scoring opportunities (eg, one constructors' championship point to be awarded for the fastest race pit stop)
    ▪ Further testing reductions (four four-day single-car pre-season tests plus one single-car pre-season shakedown)
    ▪ Reduction of grand prix duration (250km or a maximum of one hour 40 minutes) pending the approval of the commercial rights holder

    Commercial
    2009:
    ▪ Increased data provision for media
    ▪ Explore means by which the presentation of Formula One action can be more informatively and dynamically presented, common to other sports such as tennis and cricket, to dramatically improve engagement with the public
    ▪ Nominated senior team spokesman available for TV during grand prix
    ▪ Commitment to enhance consumer experience via team and FOTA websites
    ▪ Mandatory driver autograph sessions during grand prix weekends

    2010:
    ▪ Commitment to enhance consumer experience via TV coverage

    KEY DEMOGRAPHICS OF GLOBAL AUDIENCE SURVEY
    ▪ 17 countries surveyed
    ▪ First ever poll of Formula One devotees alongside non-Formula One devotees (ie, marginal and/or low interest fans)
    ▪ Responses were weighted according to the size of viewing market in each country (to avoid small markets skewing the results)
    ▪ Results were segmented by interest level in Formula One, demographic profiles (age and gender), country and region
    ▪ Total audience is comprised of:
    - Regular fans (25% by volume, predominantly male, cross section of ages)
    - Moderate fans (44% by volume, female and male, cross section of ages)
    - Infrequent fans (31% by volume, unlikely to watch grands prix, predominantly female, cross section of ages)

    KEY FINDINGS OF GLOBAL AUDIENCE SURVEY
    1. F1 isn't broken, so beware "over-fixing" it
    The current race format is not viewed as fundamentally broken (across all levels of Formula One interest) and therefore doesn't require radical alteration. There is a strong desire for Formula One to remain meritocratic, while consumer interest is driven most by appreciation of driver skill, overtaking and technology.

    Implication: there is no evidence to suggest that grand prix formats need "tricking up" via, for example, handicapping, sprint races, reversed grids or one-on-one pursuit races. Formula One audiences appreciate the traditional gladiatorial, high-tech nature of the sport and would not respond favourably to a perceived "dumbing down" of the current format.

    2. F1 needs to be more consumer-friendly
    An individual's view or understanding of Formula One is framed almost entirely by their local broadcaster. Unlike most global sports, the vast majority of "consumption" of Formula One is via race-day TV coverage, supplemented in part by traditional, non-specialist newspaper coverage. Formula One fans are also mature consumers of new media channels (eg, on-line, mobile) and other touch points (eg, gaming, merchandise).

    The global nature of Formula One, although an attractive characteristic in itself, impedes the uniformity of race schedules, and often results in consumption of a race being limited to locally broadcast TV highlights programmes. Only devotees (25% of the total potential viewing audience) are likely to watch a race live if it occurs outside peak viewing times.

    Implication: significant opportunities exist to build audience via other channels such as internet and mobile.

    3. Major changes to qualifying format are not urgent
    When asked to consider alternative qualifying formats, all fan types expressed a modest preference for a meritocratically determined starting grid. There was some degree of interest in allowing luck to play a part in shaping the starting order, but the general sentiment was that the fastest driver should always start from pole.

    Implication: there may be justification for minor modifications to the current qualifying format, following further trials; however, a major change to the format will not result in a significant increase in audience.

    4. Revisions to the points-scoring system
    As with qualifying, all audiences want a meritocratic points-scoring system. This means that they want winning grands prix to count for more than it does currently. There is an indication that all audiences would like to see a greater points reward for winning grands prix.

    Implication: a minor adjustment to the existing points system is justified

    5. Evolution of pit stops and refuelling
    All audiences view pit stops as integral to their enjoyment of grand prix coverage; however, they rank the most important and compelling aspect of pit stops as tyre changing rather than refuelling. Race strategies were not highly ranked as a determinant of interest in Formula One.

    Implication: audiences are unlikely to diminish if refuelling is discontinued. Tire changing is an important driver of audience interest (in pit stops) and should not be further automated.

    TEAM PRINCIPAL QUOTES

    Sir Frank Williams (Team Principal, AT&T WilliamsF1)
    "The new FOTA group has the best of intentions in representing the teams best interests, both technically and commercially. FOTA wishes to enjoy an open and productive relationship with both the FIA and FOM."

    Dr Mario Theissen (BMW Motorsport Director and Team Principal, BMW Sauber F1 Team)
    "The FIA and FOTA are pursuing the same aims - to increase the sporting value of Formula One and to cut the expenditure required to do so. Reducing costs is definitely the way to go. The members of FOTA have made great efforts to this end over recent months and have set out a whole series of measures which will already allow substantial cost savings in 2009. Further savings for the coming years will follow in due course."

    Dr Vijay Mallya (Chairman and Team Principal, Force India Formula One Team)
    "Formula One is undoubtedly about competition and striving to beat one's opposition. While this is very much the essence of the on-track action, unity and collaboration off-track is crucial. The open spirit of discussion and co-operation to increase both the spectacle and financial viability of Formula One are entirely positive for the sport and its investors - ie, the teams, the sponsors and of course the fans. I fully support the initiatives and hope that between FOTA, the FIA and FOM we can find a balance to safeguard the wonderful sport we have before us now."

    Flavio Briatore (Team Principal, ING Renault F1 Team)
    "Through FOTA we have found unity among the teams as we strive to provide a sustainable future for Formula One. From a commercial standpoint, we recognise that while our sport enjoys a remarkable global reach, there is still room to improve its appeal as an investment opportunity.
    It is clear that we need to strengthen Formula One as a show and through our global audience survey we have given a voice to the consumers of Formula One. The results confirm that we must exploit the potential of new media, while continuing to enhance the TV experience, which remains the most important interface with the public. It is therefore essential to provide our audience with more information and to make the teams and drivers more accessible to ensure that we deliver a product that is always exciting, unpredictable and compelling both on and off the track. I am confident that, working together, and in a constructive spirit with both governing bodies FIA and FOM, FOTA can help build a solid future for the sport in the years ahead."

    Tadashi Yamashina (Team Principal, Panasonic Toyota F1)
    "FOTA has already achieved a great deal and we can be very satisfied with the progress we have made, but there is a lot of work still ahead of us. It is vitally important not to neglect the soul of grand prix racing. Formula One is the pinnacle of motorsport and our challenge is to retain the DNA of the sport as a technological as well as a human contest, while also delivering value for money for all stakeholders, and this includes the fans. We all embrace the need to cut costs, and the significant savings achieved by FOTA and the FIA at the end of last year are a promising start. FOTA's strength lies in the unity of the teams. This unprecedented joint initiative, which we hope will work in combination with the FIA and FOM, can inspire Formula One to conquer the challenges facing it and the wider world."

    Christian Horner (Team Principal, Red Bull Racing)
    "Since FOTA was established in the summer of 2008, the organisation has already made strides, in conjunction with the FIA, towards achieving significant cost savings for the 2009 season. Through FOTA's working groups, the teams are acting as a unit for the first time to ensure Formula One improves its appeal to all generations of fans, while continuing to control costs. Red Bull fully supports the work of FOTA."

    Stefano Domenicali (Team Principal, Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro)
    "United in our intentions and with a common vision for the future of Formula One, while remaining rivals on track: these are the key strengths of FOTA. It is thanks to its creation that we have already achieved significant results in just a few months. Racing is part of Ferrari's DNA and will always be so, which is why we are working very hard, along with all the other teams. We must continue on this track to make our sport more exciting for the fans and more attractive for our current partners and also potential ones, while maintaining close links with the production of road cars."

    Franz Tost (Team Principal, Scuderia Toro Rosso)
    "FOTA has already achieved a great deal in a short space of time, thanks to unprecedented unanimity amongst the teams. The motto united we stand, divided we fall has been around for many years, but Formula One team owners took a while to take it on board! FOTA should not rest on its laurels, but continue to collaborate as closely as possible with the FIA and FOM to ensure the continued success of Formula One as a sport, as entertainment and as a business."

    Martin Whitmarsh (Team Principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes)
    "FOTA has already achieved more than any other assembly of Formula One teams in the history of our sport, and those achievements are both a result of and a testament to the strength of FOTA's unity. On track, Formula One teams remain as competitive as ever; but, off track, in collaboration with the FIA and FOM, motivated by our shared ambition to steer grand prix racing to ever-greater successes, we're now devoting a great deal of time, resource and radical thought to making a concerted effort to enhance the benefits of all Formula One stakeholders - the teams, the manufacturers, the sponsors, the media and above all the fans."

    Ross Brawn
    "FOTA represents a hugely important initiative, all of the Formula One teams working together to combine their strengths to the benefit of all aspects of our sport, Formula One. Never before have I experienced the level of unity and commitment of the teams that has been demonstrated within FOTA under the leadership of Luca di Montezemolo. This is a complementary process to the work of the FIA and FOM and enables the teams to present unified views on how we can take both our sport and the motorsport industry forward. As an ex-rugby player, I was taught to apply the principles of competition on the field and a spirit of co-operation and unity off the field. That is the principle of FOTA."

    ________________________________________


    Here is a timeline/history of FOTAs main actions.

    29 July 2008, Maranello
    - The F1 teams unanimously agree to establish the Formula One Teams Association " FOTA " to work with the FIA and FOM on regulations and commercial conditions to provide a framework for a strong and dynamic sport

    11 September 2008, Monza
    - Signature of the Articles of Association. FOTA becomes fully operational
    - Luca di Montezemolo (Ferrari) and John Howett (Toyota) are elected Chairman and Vice Chairman
    - Martin Whitmarsh chairs the Sporting Working Group
    - Ross Brawn chairs the Technical Working Group
    - Flavio Briatore chairs the Commercial Development Working Group
    - All team principals are represented in the Executive Committee
    - Decisions are taken with a 70% majority rule

    4 October 2008, Shanghai
    - The teams agree a first package of measures to be introduced in 2009; it is the first time ever that unanimous agreement is reached among all the Formula One teams
    - In 2009, a critical year for the difficult economic environment, the teams define a set of measures tailored to addressing immediate concerns

    4 November & 4 December 2008, London
    - The teams agree to further measures, implementing substantial cost-cutting for 2009 and 2010, and additional initiatives to improve the show

    10 December 2008, Monaco
    - The proposals are presented to the FIA and agreed with immediate implementation thanks to the unanimity of the teams

    8 January & 3 February 2009, London
    - The teams further refine their proposals
    - A longer-term strategy is agreed to introduce stable regulations, addressing the need to reduce costs and increase revenues.

    5 March 2009, Geneva
    - FOTA's Formula One roadmap is unveiled

    FOTA EXECUTIVES

    ▪ Chairman - Luca di Montezemolo
    ▪ Vice Chairman - John Howett
    ▪ Chairman, Sporting Working Group - Martin Whitmarsh
    ▪ Chairman, Technical Working Group - Ross Brawn
    ▪ Chairman, Commercial Development Working Group - Flavio Briatore
    ▪ Secretary General - Simone Perillo Bottom of Form

  12. #42
    Still Wondering mika's Avatar
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    F1 News

    Brawn GP formerly Honda Racing F1

    Press release: Future of former Honda team secured

    Ross Brawn represented his team at the FOTA meeting tipping the announcement was immanent.

    Engine: Mercedes-Benz
    Drivers: Jenson Button and Rubens Barrichello
    Sponsorship: No information on who is sponsoring this effort.


    paddocktalk.com: Who is backing Honda buyoutǪSpyker???

    reuters.com: Montezemolo says carmakers prepared to commit to F1

    Next Race

    Grand Prix of Australia
    Round 01, 29 March, 2009, Albert Park, Melbourne, Australia.
    Lap Distance: 5.303km/3.295 miles Race: 58 laps - 307.574km/191.110 miles

    This is the FIM information on the Australian GP. Sectors and sector times is useful information, particularly if you watch qualifying. These correspond to the ones Speed and others use to provide coverage. The suggested times are a base line only to give some idea of what parts of the track are fast or slow.

    Sector times will be more important to watch for two reasons.
    1. KERS The estimated 80HP can be tapped for a just less than seven seconds per lap. The teams and drivers employing it will be mapping out the track to see where it can be best used to improve times.
    2. Aerodynamics Drivers are allowed two adjustments per lap altering the front wing over a six-degree range. Drivers like Heidfeld seem to be able to set their car up for all but one or two sectors of the track. The wing adjustment option may help them bend the car to their will all the way around.

    formula1.com: The Official website has some interesting features that augment the FIM site. Click through the site and you will find a variety of information.

    A must have for your GP watching pleasure is Live Timing from the Formula1.com. The registration is free and provides a tone of information.
    Guide to Live Timing:
    Formula1.com's exclusive Live Timing system streams real-time data directly from Formula One Management's Technical Facility at the race track. It displays information supplied to the teams from every session of the Grand Prix weekend:
    1. Main timing screen - driver number, name, position, lap times, sector times, number of laps, plus full text commentary during qualifying and the race
    2. Weather & Speed screen - ambient and track temperatures, humidity, air pressure, rainfall, wind speed and direction, speed-trap data
    3. Lap chart screen - a graphic representation of how each driver is faring over the course of the race
    If you are a junkie and have live timing and watch SpeedTV keep in mind the TV is behind the live web feed allowing the announcers to prepare their song and dance of color commentary. In past seasons, frankly, the writer for the feed has done a better job than Speed and in some cases they lift comments straight from the feed.

    The other thing is the Live Timing allows you to track fights within the race. This brings the back markers alive as racers instead of objects to be passed. Pick a driver and watch his time splits for the car in front of him and the one behind. Were is you guy fast, slow and who is he fending off.

    Formula 1 Team News

    Links to the official team sites and team specific stories

    BMW Sauber F1

    AT&T Williams
    Ferrari

    Force India F1

    ING Renault

    formula1.com: Jerez day four Alonso back on top

    McLaren

    bbc.co.uk: McLaren face hard work - Hamilton

    Red Bull Racing

    Toro Rosso

    Toyota F1


    USGPE The team formally know as USF1

    A rose by any other name would have run into a trademark battle between God and Mother Nature.
    grandprix.com: USF1 becomes USGPE

    Funny thing is Honda was always referred to by Formula 1 as Honda Racing F1. For all the hoopla wanting to bring in more teams, apparently they have not be taught the secret handshake yet.

  13. #43
    Not available in stores.. PAGoldsby's Avatar
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    Everyone who was surprised that Ross Brawn ended up at the helm of the ex-Honda team, please say "Aye!"


    < crickets >


    I'm glad RB is still in F1, but I'd rather see the other RB just retire already.
    I can't believe how incredulous I am.

  14. #44
    Still Wondering mika's Avatar
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    At least he didn't sign DC as a driver.

    F1 News

    f1network.net: Key data of the F1 global survey

    f1-live.com: BMW keen to be F1s KERS supplier

    reuters.com: Montezemolo says carmakers prepared to commit to F1

    reuters.com: Formula One line-ups for 2009

    bbc.co.uk: Testing times ahead

    telegraph.co.uk: Bernie Ecclestone sold ?57m house after his wife refused to move in


    Next Race

    Grand Prix of Australia
    Round 01, 29 March, 2009, Albert Park, Melbourne, Australia.
    Lap Distance: 5.303km/3.295 miles Race: 58 laps - 307.574km/191.110 miles

    Formula 1 Team News

    Links to the official team sites and team specific stories

    BMW Sauber F1

    independent.co.uk: Heidfeld insists BMW are F1 contenders

    BMW Sauber F1 Team - Interview with Nick Heidfeld
    03-06-2009 Press Release
    Questions to BMW Sauber F1 Team driver Nick Heidfeld.


    Munich/Hinwil, 6th March 2009. BMW Sauber F1 Team driver, Nick Heidfeld, can look back on a busy winter. He undertook an intensive period of fitness training which has left him feeling stronger than ever, got engaged to the mother of his children and has taken on with great enthusiasm the challenges presented by the new generation of Formula One cars. Nick already has seven days of testing with the BMW Sauber F1.09 under his belt in Valencia, Sakhir and Jerez and will complete another two in Barcelona on 9th and 10th March. After that, his next outing will be at the opening race of the 2009 season: the Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne on 27th-29th March.


    Nick Heidfeld, are you happy with the teams preparations for the season so far?

    BMW Sauber F1 Team driver Nick Heidfeld: ǣThis year our preparations have been like a journey of discovery. There are so many new things about the car which all of us have had to get to grips with, and thats a lot of fun. As far as Im concerned, the testing weve conducted so far has been very positive. The F1.09 is already driving pretty well for a completely newly developed car and it reacts well to changes in set-up. We can still improve on reliability but at no time have we been confronted by unsolvable problems and we have racked up more miles than several of our rivals. However, the restrictions on testing mean that every lost mile on the track tends to hurt. Weve been able to make consistent improvements and still have a lot more ideas which we can develop. Unfortunately, I cant say where this puts us in comparison with our rivals everybody keeps their cards close to their chests in testing. You never know exactly what kind of programme the other teams are running, let alone how much fuel they have on board. Ill be happy when all the guessing games come to an end in Melbourne.

    Which of the changes to the car do you like most?

    Heidfeld: ǣFirstly, I think the idea underpinning all the changes is the right one; after all, the aim was to make overtaking easier. I also think that the interplay of the various factors will have an effect here, if only to a certain degree Formula One is not about to suddenly become like touring car racing. Im pleased to see the return of slick tyres. I never liked the fact that, in Formula One of all competitions, we didnt have slicks for such a long time. The effects of the noticeably reduced downforce on the cars aerodynamics require an adjustment in driving style.

    Can you explain to us when and how you gain by adjusting the front wing from your steering wheel, as the regulations now allow.

    Heidfeld: ǣIt can enhance the cars balance in various types of corner. However, we are only allowed to use this system twice per lap i.e. we can make one adjustment to the wing and then return it to its original setting. I doubt whether it really helps in terms of making overtaking easier, but thats something well see in the races.

    And how are you getting on with the Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS)?

    Heidfeld: ǣThis is good fun as well. Its great when you press the Boost button on the steering wheel and feel the extra shove of 80 horsepower. In testing I also got my first experience of how it feels when another driver presses the button and you dont youre just left standing. You have to plan really well how you use this additional power, and thats the job of the driver during the race. We are allowed to press the button for 6.5 seconds per lap. The systems main advantage is for overtaking when youre up close behind someone, for example in the opening stages of a race. As soon as we have reached 100 km/h and that takes less than three seconds the electronics release the Boost button. You just need to have charged up the energy storage unit first, of course.

    Arent all these functions confusing for you as a driver?

    Heidfeld: ǣYou get used to them. Although Id have to say that my steering wheel was clearer when we still had our own BMW electronics, before the introduction of the standard F1 electronics. Back then we had some clever sub-levels for various functions.

    What is your personal aim for the season?

    Heidfeld: ǣThats been the same for years. My goal is to get everything possible out of the car and the situation on each lap and each race weekend. What is actually possible is determined to a large degree by our technical performance. The aim of the team is to be involved in the title battle in 2009. In the past few years we have always met our intermediate targets and I hope we manage to do that again in 2009.

    Which would mean youd have a good chance of recording your maiden grand prix victoryǪ

    Heidfeld: ǣYes, in order to do that you have to have a car underneath you that is capable of winning. Thats what Im hoping for, of course, and thats what we are working to achieve.

    What is your contribution here?

    Heidfeld: ǣI provide as much input as I can in the development of the car. I explain to our engineers exactly how the car feels and where Id like things improved. Im not a development engineer, but I think that my experience enables me to offer feedback which can bring the team forwards. Another aspect is my physical fitness. Ive done more fitness training this winter than ever before, and it has helped that weve had more time available due to the testing restrictions. I feel extremely fit now.

    Have you also been on a starvation diet? There has been much written about a slimming mania in Formula One.

    Heidfeld: ǣNo, I havent been on a starvation diet, and that would also be the wrong way to go. There is a connection between weight and performance. Hardcore dieting only weakens you. But I have been paying a lot of attention to what I eat and have gradually lost two-and-a-half kilos despite the extra muscle Ive built up in training.

    Given the restrictions on testing, will you also need to step up your training programme during the season?

    Heidfeld: ǣFor sure. The best fitness training for a Formula One driver is driving a Formula One car. Well need to make up for spending less time in the car.

    Will you still have time to get married? Youre engaged now, of courseǪ

    Heidfeld: ǣWe havent set a date yet, but that wont create a problem. The ban on testing should make it possible.


    Whats your view on the cost-cutting approach adopted by Formula One?

    Heidfeld: ǣI think its very important, and some of the ideas are already bearing fruit. Each driver now only has eight engines for the whole season, for example, and we wont be doing any more testing from the middle of March. This is the first time that the teams involved in the World Championship have agreed on such major changes. And that is something that should be warmly welcomed in the current economic climate.

    Even if you are hit in the pocket as a result?

    Heidfeld: ǣNobody is happy about salary cuts. The driver is clearly an important factor in the team. BMW draws up an objective cost-benefit analysis for every area of the teams budget and has never paid ǣfantasy salaries. As in the past, its just about reaching an agreement.


    AT&T Williams

    Brawn GP

    Honda.com: Hondas announcement of the sale to Brawn GP

    formula1.com: Button shakes down new Brawn car at Silverstone
    Ferrari

    Force India F1

    ING Renault

    formula1.com: Jerez day four Alonso back on top

    McLaren

    bbc.co.uk: McLaren face hard work - Hamilton

    Red Bull Racing

    Toro Rosso

    Toyota F1


    USGPE The team formally know as USF1

    A rose by any other name would have turned into a trademark battle between God and Mother Nature.
    grandprix.com: USF1 becomes USGPE

    Funny thing is Honda was always referred to by Formula 1 as Honda Racing F1. For all the hoopla wanting to bring in more teams, apparently they have not be taught the secret handshake yet.

  15. #45
    Still Wondering mika's Avatar
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    F1 News

    autosport.com: Teams urged to act to get US GP back

    f1complete.com: France on track for F1 return

    timesonline.com: How McLaren could save themselves ?10m a year.


    Next Race

    Grand Prix of Australia
    Round 01, 29 March, 2009, Albert Park, Melbourne, Australia.
    Lap Distance: 5.303km/3.295 miles Race: 58 laps - 307.574km/191.110 miles

    Formula 1 Team News - Check the individual team sites for Barcelona test results. Brawn GP's performance is the big news this week.

    Links to the official team sites and team specific stories
    BMW Sauber F1 Team - Test in Barcelona - Day four
    03-12-2009 Press Release
    Test in Barcelona.

    March 9th 12th 2009

    Day four Thursday

    Weather conditions: Heavy fog early morning, sunny for the rest of the day.

    Temperature: Air: 8 19 ??C, Track: 10 26 ??C

    Number of drivers participating: 11 from 10 teams

    Fastest lap overall: Rubens Barrichello (Brawn GP) 1:18.926 min

    Circuit length: 4.655 km


    Robert Kubica
    Chassis / engine: BMW Sauber F1.09-04 / BMW 86/9
    Test kilometres today: 624 (134 laps)
    Fastest lap: 1:20.740 min


    Programme:
    The last day of the BMW Sauber F1 Teams pre-season testing started with a delay of more than an hour due to heavy fog. When the sun had finally burnt through Robert Kubica did a race simulation that included start procedures and pit stops. After the lunch break Kubica continued to evaluate different solutions for the BMW Sauber F1.09s set-up in advance of the Australian Grand Prix. Today he covered 134 laps, bringing the cars total mileage for the four Barcelona test days to 2,162 kms.

    Willy Rampf, BMW Sauber F1 Team Technical Coordinator, said: ǣOur final pre-season test was very productive. We worked on the mechanical set-up of the car as well as the aero configuration. In addition, we also improved our KERS. Our second goal was to prepare for the seasons first Grand Prix in two weeks in Melbourne. We simulated a proper race day on Tuesday with Nick Heidfeld and today with Robert Kubica, each covering a complete race distance without any technical problems. That tells us a lot about the reliability of the BMW Sauber F1.09.


    What comes next:
    The fourth day on the Circuit de Catalunya concluded the BMW Sauber F1 Teams pre-season testing. The team will continue its preparation at the home base before heading to Melbourne for the season-opening Australian Grand Prix on Sunday, March 29th.


    BMW Sauber F1 Team - Interview with Robert Kubica
    03-13-2009 Press Release
    Munich/Hinwil, 13th March 2009. The final day of testing of the BMW Sauber F1 Team for the 2009 season has now passed. After taking the F1.09 for its maiden outing in Valencia on 20th January, Robert Kubica tested the car in Bahrain, Jerez and Barcelona. Those who know the Pole would not expect him to be happy with every aspect of preparations for the forthcoming season; for Robert this would be tantamount to lethargy. After all, why only be good when you can be better? In addition to fitness training and F1 preparation work he also used the winter to launch a new venture: Robert Kubica Kart.


    Robert Kubica, how has testing gone with the F1.09?

    BMW Sauber F1 Team driver Robert Kubica: ǣWinter testing is always important. This year it is even more important because of the drastic changes in the regulations. It is hard to say if the direction is right because every team starts with a completely new package from zero. So there is a lot to do in testing. For example, on the last day of the final pre-season test in Barcelona I covered more than twice the distance of a Grand Prix. That is pretty demanding on the car and on the driver. Neither the BMW Sauber F1.09 nor my body had a problem with that. That shows my fitness training during the winter was as perfect as the work on the reliability of the car. In addition to the race simulation, we evaluated a lot of different solutions for the mechanical set-up and the aero configuration of the car. We were able to make up some of the time we lost the week before in Jerez due to the unfortunate weather. So overall it was a very productive test.


    Will you miss having opportunities to test during the season?

    Kubica: ǣThis is something I have mixed feelings about. On the one hand, Im pleased that there will be a bit less travelling and Ill maybe have more time for myself. Having said that, over previous seasons testing has played a very important role in pushing forward the development of the car and setting it up for the next races. I cant be sure yet whether we will be able to be as effective during the testing permitted on Fridays of each race weekend.


    How do you see the various technical modifications for 2009?

    Kubica: ǣAll in all, the F1.09 is totally different to drive compared with our 2008 car. The reduced aerodynamics make the cars have less downforce. This will be counteracted partly by the slick tyres, which build up much more grip particularly at the front axle than the grooved tyres weve been using in the past few seasons. This imbalance between the front and rear axle means the cars oversteer more. Personally, I think this is quite fun, although I would prefer to have greater aerodynamic downforce.
    Ive got used to the larger front wing now. The tricky thing about it is that you cant see its outer edges from the cockpit because they are hidden by the front wheels. Im looking forward to seeing what happens in the first corner at the Australian Grand Prix. I can imagine that we will see a lot more damaged front wings than in the past when things get tight. Regarding KERS, I have mixed feelings. As I am a tall and relatively heavy person I have disadvantages regarding the weight and consequently the weight distribution of the car. But on the other hand KERS could be a big advantage because of the boost.


    Will the new variables make the car more complicated to use for the driver?

    Kubica: ǣNot really. Using KERS and the adjustable front wing is not particularly difficult. Once youve worked out where to use KERS to optimum effect at each track and in which places you adjust the front wing, it happens pretty much automatically.


    Do you think it will be easier to overtake this season?

    Kubica: ǣKERS definitely helps on a straight when you want to overtake somebody who doesnt have the system. I think the picture will not change dramatically. But I really hope there will be more opportunities to overtake, because fans and drivers miss overtaking in Formula One.


    Will the teams be more closely matched?

    Kubica: ǣIts difficult to say. There was very little between the top teams in testing. Whether that will also be the case in qualifying will doubtless depend very much on how well the teams are able to prepare for each race track and thats become harder with the restrictions on testing. When it comes to the races, a major factor will be how effectively the car and driver work with the tyres. There is some uncertainty here as well; the new tyres mean we can only use data from the past to a limited degree.


    What is your aim for the 2009 season?

    Kubica: ǣTo get 100 percent out of myself and the F1.09 in every race. Only then we can have the chance to beat the other top teams and still be battling for the title in the final race of the season.


    How do you think the BMW Sauber F1 Team is shaping up compared to its rivals?

    Kubica: ǣAs always testing can only give you ideas on where you are. And it can also mislead you. Our goal is to be best prepared for Australia. And I think we are on a good path. But we have to wait until Melbourne to really see where we are. The Qualifying will give all the teams a first impression about the balance of power.


    How did you spend the winter?

    Kubica: ǣThe winter was, as always, very relaxing after a long and exciting season. As usual I prepared for the coming season, worked a lot on fitness and strength for another very demanding season.


    How did you focus your winter training?

    Kubica: ǣMy overall fitness level was good so I concentrated on keeping this level for the new season. A lot of drivers focused on losing weight because of KERS. From my experience in 2008 I know where my limits are in this respect.


    What was your goal in setting up Robert Kubica Kart?

    Kubica: ǣI have been karting for many years and really enjoying it. Karting was my world. Now being in Formula One I am just karting for fun as often as I can. So my basic idea was to set up a karting team and develop my own brand. Once it has started properly I am sure it will give me some satisfaction and also good results.


    Are you happy with the development of RK Kart?

    Kubica: ǣYes, but we are still at a very early stage. We worked a lot before we managed to get the homologation for our first self-developed racing kart. And we need to keep working to improve. I am pretty confident it will be a good project.
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