HRT Extends Technical Partnership with Williams

November 3, 2011

HRT renews and extends its technical collaboration with Williams F1

Madrid, 3rd of November 2011

“HRT Formula One Team is pleased to announce that its existing deal with Williams F1 for the supply of its gearboxes has been renewed until the end of the 2012 season, with a view to a further extension after that. The new deal also provides for a greater technical collaboration that will contribute to improving the performance level of HRT F1 Team.

“Besides providing the latest technology in gearboxes, Williams F1 will also supply the team with KERS and its related technology for the first time in the Spanish team’s history.

“The collaboration with Williams F1 highlights the team’s commitment to stability and development for next season’s car, the F112, which the team has been working on over the past few months from its technical office in Munich. The team’s design centre houses over 60 people, both in DO and aerodynamics’ departments, working under the supervision of Jacky Eeckelaert and aerodynamicist, Stephane Chosse. A team which will continue to grow in the forthcoming weeks.

“The deal with Williams F1 strictly follows the terms agreed in the Concorde Agreement and both teams will compete independently in the Formula 1 Constructors’ Championship.”

Colin Kolles, HRT Team Principal: “In these past two years we have established a fruitful collaboration with Williams F1 and are pleased to continue having them play an important role in the development of our team. Apart from the experience we have accumulated in these years together, they will not only provide us with the latest technology in gearboxes but we will also reap the benefits of having KERS for next year, this being an important step for our team.

“We have grown as a team with Williams F1’s support and we are pleased to continue counting on them in the future, given their trajectory, prestige and renowned experience in Formula 1. This agreement strengthens the development of the 2012 car that is currently taking place at our technical office in Munich. At HRT we are working on thoroughly improving the performance of our cars and our target is still to finish in the top ten in 2012. This deal brings us one step closer to that objective”.

Alex Burns, Williams F1 CEO: “I am delighted that we are extending our agreement with HRT, in both its scope and duration. We have enjoyed a good working relationship with HRT in 2011 and look forward to continuing this in 2012 and beyond. The fact that they have selected Williams F1’s gearbox and KERS technology for their car is a credit to all of the Williams F1 people involved in our cost-effective engineering and manufacturing in these areas.”

Rubens Wants Someone to Take Charge at Williams

May 12, 2011

Rubens Barrichello – Williams FW32

Rubens Barrichello feels that Williams still needs someone to take charge of the team in spite of the recent change of management which sees Sam Michael leave and Mike Coughlan join: “We are missing something still. We need to address the problems.

“It is good to have some of the top guys here to see, because Sam will give 100% up until the end, but we need a leader. We need a leader.

“Right now, it is almost like we have too many but not enough. A lot of people are trying to say something but in the end that is not the point. They need to focus on what they are doing.

“Sam looks a bit more relaxed because he has settled down a bit. We need, as soon as possible, something that brings the car along.

“I can possibly recruit more people, look at other teams. I can. I am a top ten guy in the paddock who has been around the longest. I know a few people and I am calling them.

“The engineering side is okay, but we need to focus on developing and sorting the problems out because right now we are getting from one race to another and is the problem getting sorted? We have had this KERS problem from the first race so depending on the weather attitude we are still struggling.

“I am possible the most positive guy in the paddock. I will always dream of a change. Right now what I said in the team, in the briefing – it is like a message that people send out to the world: everybody needs to do their individual thing to get out of this.

“Right now, it is too easy to say that Williams has gone, that it is in the past but if each member does their little bit on their way of working, they are going to make it better and we need it better, because right now there is such a suffering with the way the car goes.”

Force India Qualifying Turkish Grand Prix 2011

May 7, 2011

2011 Turkish Grand Prix Qualifying and Final Free Practice Report – 7 May

It was another encouraging afternoon for Force India as Adrian and Paul qualified in P12 and P13 respectively for tomorrow’s Turkish Grand Prix at Istanbul Park.

Adrian Sutil (car 14, VJM04/04)
FP3: P13,  1:27.318 (19 laps)
Q1: P7,  1:27.397 (8 laps)
Q2: P12, 1:27.027 (6 laps)

Paul Di Resta (car 15, VJM04/02)
FP3: P16,  1:27.644 (18 laps)
Q1: P12,  1:27.652 (8 laps)
Q2: P13, 1:27.145 (3 laps)

Adrian Sutil (car 14)
It was quite a straightforward session for me with no major issues. I think we used the tyres well, there were no problems with traffic and it was a great team effort. But we should remember that the races so far this year have shown that qualifying is not as important as it used to be and it’s more important to have a good car for the race. I’m pretty happy with my set-up for tomorrow and feel more comfortable with the car than I did at the last race. In terms of the tyres, the hard seemed to perform very well yesterday, but the softs are looking good in the higher temperatures so it will be interesting to see how that develops in the race.

Paul Di Resta (car 15)
I think it was another great team performance today and we are roughly where we expected to be. There were no problems in Q1, and in Q2 I only did one run because we thought it would optimise our race strategy and save a set of tyres. I’m happy with my set-up for the race and I think we’ve sacrificed a bit more today to have a better car tomorrow. Hopefully that will put us in a reasonable position to fight the cars ahead of us and pick up some more points.

Robert Fernley, Deputy Team Principal
A pretty good day overall. Starting in P12 and P13 puts us in a great position to race strongly and hopefully challenge for more points. It was a shame that we just missed out on getting ahead of Barrichello, but ultimately Williams were just a little quicker today. For the race I think we can expect more of what we saw in China with lots of action throughout the field. It will be interesting to see how the tyres hold up, especially with the demands of turn eight, and we know there are some good overtaking opportunities in the lap which should make for some exciting racing.

Gascoyne Delighted with Shanghai Result

April 25, 2011

Lotus T 127

Mike Gascoyne, Team Lotus’s Chief Technical Officer, was jubilant that Heikki Kovalainen finished in 16th place in Shanghai, beating the Williams of Pastor Maldonado.  “It’s the most significant 16th place I’ve ever achieved.

“We were genuinely racing. It’s not that we’ve inherited something, we’ve raced and beaten the established teams on pace, and that’s a really big step for the team.”

Realistically he aims to beat Williams, but he also respects the team. “Unfortunately, it’s probably Williams. I say unfortunately because it’s a great team and a great name, and you’d like to see them nearer the front.

“So maybe I’m a bit of an old git and there’s a bit of nostalgia there, but we’re Team Lotus now and if we’re racing Williams then that’s good for us.

“Normally you just go away and that’s that, but I will sit down and watch the race again because what a race for Formula One.

“Tribute to Pirelli with what they’ve done. They’ve taken a risk with these tyres, believing that tyre degradation would make for good racing, and Sunday’s race proved it.

“We’re clearly struggling for one-lap pace when we have cool days and low track temperatures but we’ve always said from winter testing that our race pace is really good and we’re very confident in it.

“It’s just trying to understand these tyres because people clearly can get better one-lap pace.

“In the race we were racing Maldonado, and we felt we had him from the first few laps, yet we qualified two seconds behind him so these tyres are really difficult to get on top.”



Team Lotus Discuss their Future

April 6, 2011


Tony Fernandes,Team Lotus’s principal has commented on the team’s bid to attract new sponsors. “The only blip in that is this court case, which has probably put some sponsors off. The thing is that people just don’t know who’s right and who’s wrong. It’s confusing for people, but it’s changing. I think many people now realise that it doesn’t matter what our name is, you’re investing in the people and the attitude. Sponsors who realise that will like us.

“We’ll fight our corner. I think we’ve proven that. We’ve taken on a Malaysian Government-linked company, we’ve taken on Group Lotus and we’ve taken on Force India. We won’t give in but we’ll do it in a proper way.”

“My target for this year was always 10th. Of course, I put a target on the boys to go for eighth. Is there a chance of being eighth? Yes, I think so but the great thing is, this time, you can see what needs to be done. The drivers are much happier and you’re not battling … well, we do have some radiator issues right now, which might last two or three races, but we’re not battling any really troubling leaks or hydraulics problems so there is a chance we will be eighth but I think realistically we can be 10th again and I’m happy with that.

“You can’t build a Formula One team in 18 months. The team that we are trying to pick off is Force India. They are Jordan. They’ve been around for 20 years. You’ve got Williams, who I watched as a kid. Toro Rosso has the advantage of Red Bull around them. Sauber have been around for many years. They’ve got fantastic facilities built for them by BMW. We have to think of things in that kind of perspective.”

Alonso is Keen for the Season to Start

March 15, 2011

Alonso Silverstone 2010

Fernando Alonso is satisfied with how the car is developing: “We’ve had a very good pre-season. I am very pleased with how the winter testing has gone. We’re the team that’s driven the most and that has had the fewest problems. On average, we have done around 100 laps each day. That demonstrates we have the reliability, which is a priority when you are dealing with a new car. We have got all those laps on the new tyres, and I’m sure that will help the team.

“All that experience with the new car I am sure helps the team to arrive in Melbourne in a 100 per cent state of readiness. Whether or not that will be enough to win, we will not know until we are in Australia, but the global outlook hasn’t changed a lot since last year.

“There is not a clear picture at the moment of where we are in terms of performance, but McLaren will be there again in the end, it seems Mercedes have improved, maybe this year also Renault and Williams who have done good work over the winter and Red Bull and Ferrari will be at the front.

“I think all the cars are very close at the moment. There is not one completely ahead of everyone and it will be decided by very small details. It will be very open going into Australia, so it’s up to us to have a better weekend than the others.

“One thing’s for sure, we will have to push on the development, like we did last year. For example, at Albert Park, I hope we will manage to bring a few updates, especially to the front wing, which can still give us a fraction more in performance terms.

“We know that the car is performing well, and we are more-or-less happy. I feel confident, just as I did last year going into the start of the season. We are in good shape, even if we know we are not racing alone out there.

“I am very realistic. The podium is the aim for someone who’s targeting the title. Arriving in Australia and not thinking like that would be too pessimistic, but we know that anything could happen. When everyone has shown their cards, there could be some surprises. Hopefully we can be on the podium, and then in three-to-four races we’ll have a much clearer idea of where we are.”

Williams Look Forward to an Innovative Year

February 26, 2011

Williams FW32

Sam Michaels, Williams Technical Director, is pleased that the new regulations have resulted in radical new designs from a number of teams.

“All the testing has shown that we have a competitive car. As long as we develop the car quickly, we can have a good year. As a team, we are more ambitious than ever.

“Teams have had to take much bigger risks. There’s the Williams gearbox, the Red Bull exhaust system and the way it blows the diffuser, the Renault exhaust system and the way it blows the front of the diffuser and the Toro Rosso double floor. Those four things are the ones that stand out.

“We’ve had some annoying systems problems but we’ve done 3800 kilometres and testing has been very good. There is a big group of teams in the middle where you can’t predict where people are. We know it’s not easy but we hope that this car will take us a step closer to the leaders. One of the things I liked is that Pastor is definitely naturally talented. He’s a rookie, he’ll make a few mistakes but I’m impressed. Rubens is the key driver for the direction of the car because someone with that experience can’t be matched. He contributes the most.”

Radical Designs have Produced the Williams FW33

February 25, 2011

2010’s Williams FW32

Adam Parr, Williams Chairman, believes that creative thinking and not a large budget will enable them to build a car good enough to compete with the current top teams.

“You have to ask questions every year about how you move forwards. Our goal is not to be a midfield team. The reason that Red Bull and Brawn won is that they did the best job, the smartest job in any given season so it’s not about money. They had to beat people with the same or more money so even if you say, ‘well the Brawn was funded by Honda money’, which it was, and even if it is true that Red Bull has all the money of Red Bull behind it, the fact is that they didn’t have more money than the teams they beat.

“It isn’t just down to money, it’s down to intelligence and team work and imagination and creative reading of the rules and all those important things that make F1 what it is and I think it would be completely wrong for us to say that we are midfield because we don’t have enough money. Nobody in this team believes that. The dynamics within all teams mean that you go through good phases and bad phases and I think we are climbing back up the grid.

“What I don’t know is how smart and brave everyone else has been and we won’t know until Australia. We have got 470 fantastic people in our team, we have got great facilities and so we should be able to build a competitive car and I very much hope that the FW33 is one of those.”

Sam Michaels,Williams Australian Technical Director, has taken a completely different view on the design of the latest car and Adam Parr is delighted with the early progress. “I’m absolutely thrilled that it has paid off in terms of reliability and performance. We did take some very ballsy decisions and I was absolutely supportive of Sam through that process to be as brave as he wanted to be and in terms of how that is going to result on the track all I can say is that the tests we have done so far are encouraging but it’s just too early to say.”

The cars were beginning to look very similar and so Sam decided to break the mould. “When we started having standard diffusers and all these restrictions, I thought this is getting really dull. We’re really dumbing down F1 but it’s doing the opposite because, by not being able to work on the diffuser, you then say ‘right, here’s something that might give you two tenths, whether it’s the gearbox or the exhaust or whatever but you have to differentiate yourself because if you don’t you’re going to be at the back so you all have nice simple cars but anyone that finds two tenths is suddenly going to be at the front because the gaps are so close.

“So I think it is having the opposite effect to dumbing down, which I think is very good for F1. These are the most standardised regulations that F1 has ever had and the cars look completely different. Look at the different designs that everybody has got. I didn’t predict it would be like that.”

McLaren’s Views on the Season Ahead

February 24, 2011

Jonathan Neale,  McLaren’s managing director has been discussing the MP4-26 and the opposition: “Everybody is concerned about pace at this time because you’ve got no firm ground. Job No. 1 for us is to make sure the car will go down and do the mileage, make sure there are no gremlins and that the numbers in the windtunnel correlate with the car on the circuit.

“If you’ve got a problem, particularly if it’s an aerodynamic one – if you’ve got a yaw issue or you’ve got a stall issue – not only have you got to go backwards and try to fire fight the issue itself, you’ve then suddenly got a whole series of question marks about the upgrades you are bringing, because you are no longer on firm ground. I think the job for all of us is to get on to firm ground, which is happening.”

“Both drivers, having driven the MP4-25 on the same tyres, were able to feel the difference between the two cars. I think that was a smart thing for us to do. Given that there are so many changes going on, it would be very difficult to disentangle and reengineer what was tyre, what was car, what was aerodynamic and what was mechanical.”

“We’ve had a really good look over all the cars and obviously they continue to develop. The Renault exhaust is an interesting feature. The Williams rear end is another really interesting feature, we’ve all been trying to figure out just quite how that comes together and works, clearly they’ve made it work. It’s always nice when somebody turns up with something different.

“We had evaluated the exhaust position that Renault are using, because I think all teams, towards the end of last year, looked at what Red Bull had achieved by blowing the floor with the exhausts, and then inevitably once the engineers are onto that theme you start to explore the envelope so I think it’s interesting that they’ve picked that option and I think it’s interesting to see where Red Bull are blowing their exhausts at the moment. Certainly the early reliability of the Ferrari looks very good, their ability to pound round fairly consistently when the degradation on the tyres is fairly high for everybody.”

“If you’re on the front of the grid on a very soft tyre, you’ll be sitting there with somebody behind you who has probably got another 15 laps in their tyres. You’re not going to pull a 20 second gap in six to ten laps, so you’re going to drop straight back into traffic and backmarkers when you pit. I think it promises some very interesting racing. The softer tyres produced a lap time about one second a lap faster than the harder tyres we had last week, and a one second per lap degradation thereafter – if you don’t nail that first lap you’re not going to be able to lift, let the tyre cool and come back again. That’s it, it’s done.”

“If you can get an 11-12km/h boost in top speed out of the wing it should work, provided that, as you pull out onto a piece of circuit, it’s got grip. If you pull out off the line onto a load of marbles, then it doesn’t matter what you’ve got because you’re grip limited rather than torque limited.”

Cosworth Can Build Competitive Engine for New Regulations

January 30, 2011

Mark Gallagher, Cosworth’s F1 Business Manager, discusses the new engine regulations for 2013:

“What Cosworth wanted to see from the negotiations wasn’t a specific engine but a specific economic model that would make it possible for an independent engine supplier to afford to develop a competitive engine that would be affordable to our customers. We were relatively agnostic about what that engine might be given that our principle objective is for us to run a business, which is profitable, in Formula 1 supplying engines to teams.

“What do we then think of the configuration that’s been come up with? Well, we know from our automotive business here that the world is moving in the direction of having small, high-performance engines. Turbocharging, reducing fuel consumption and the hybridisation of road cars is upon us therefore the return of Kinetic Energy Recovery Systems and, indeed, the increased importance of KERS in the 2013 regulations comes as no surprise. We’re satisfied that with these rules we can develop a competitive engine and, more to the point, a competitive power unit including the KERS because part of what’s in our mind at the moment is that going forward Cosworth needs to provide a bigger overall solution.

“We already work closely with our teams on gearbox testing, which we do here. We are, of course, validating the KERS engine at the moment for Williams who are going to be running KERS this coming season and I think the reality is that the new regulations give us all a reasonable opportunity to spend the next two years coming up with a good solution. It’s good that the announcement was made before the end of 2010. Obviously the chips are down now, we have to crack on with coming up with this new power train.”

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