Dopo la parantesi di Mercedes e Red Bull che hanno presentato due macchine vere, facendole anche girare in pista, torniamo ai teatrini degli sponsor, con la presentazione di un team che quest’anno nessuno chiamerà mai col suo nome completo, vista la lunghezza: SportPesa Racing Point F1 Team.
L’annuncio durante durante l’evento pre-stagione di lancio svoltosi al Salone Internazionale dell’Auto in Canada, il primo lancio in assoluto di un team Formula 1 in Canada. Presenti all’evento i due piloti del team, Sergio Perez e Lance Stroll, oltre al Team Principal Otmar Szafnauer e al Direttore Tecnico Andrew Green. SportPesa, società globale nel settore della tecnologia e dell’entertainment, diventa quindi partner del team Racing Point. L’accordo pluriennale ha effetto immediato e per l’intera durata della partnership il nome del team sarà SportPesa Racing Point F1 Team. Le monoposto Racing Point mantengono il colore rosa e BWT continuerà a essere title sponsor del team e verrà aggiunto il colore blu del brand SportPesa sugli alettoni anteriore e posteriore e sul coprimotore.
Team Principal & CEO, Otmar Szafnauer: “After months of hard work behind-the-scenes it’s incredibly exciting to come to Canada and present our new identity. The long-term aim is to take this team to the very top of the sport. We are putting the building blocks in place and it’s important we take a good step forward in 2019 as we begin this new era. We want to be fighting for podiums on merit and aiming for a strong top four finish in the championship.”
Andrew Green offered insights on the technical side: “The design and build process for the RP19 has generally been an improvement compared to previous years, which is a positive result of the change in team ownership. I look forward to seeing the car on track. We all want to start understanding the various aspects of the car’s performance; understanding all the mechanical and aerodynamic improvements of the car, our new power unit and make sure our reliability is sound. We are already looking beyond our testing-spec car, actually: we’re planning what to bring to the first race, what to bring to round five in Barcelona and what we should be looking at as we develop this package, something we’ve been unable to do previously. A new set of aero rules means the development slope has become steep again.”
Sergio Perez summed up his goals for 2019: “I’m really excited to stay with this team as we begin the new era. We have stability and strong leadership at the top, which is important because it means I can simply focus on the driving and performance. I want us to be the best of the rest once again. I believe in this team and I think we can achieve great things together.”
Lance Stroll echoed Sergio’s comments: “I can see how much potential we have in this team and there’s an incredible buzz in the factory and so much enthusiasm. I always aim high so I want us to be competitive right from the start. It’s way too early to know how we compare to the other teams, but right here today I believe we should be fighting for points in every race. My goal is to get back on the podium in 2019 as well. I’ve seen what this team achieved in the past and it’s a real credit to the people involved. I’m looking forward to making our own history.”