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Sauber F1 Team Announces Formula 1 2012 Car Debut: Fan’s Perspective
When I went to the official Formula 1 website, I was excited to see the big countdown clock is now counting down towards the start of the 2012 season. The season kicks off with the Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne, Australia and the countdown clock shows 88 days until the first race on March 18, 2012.
As teams and fans are looking forward to the 2012 Formula 1 season, the Sauber team is the first team to confirm the launch date for their 2012 car. The team will unveil their Ferrari-powered monster C31 race car in Jerez, Spain on February 6, the day before the start of the first pre-season test on the beautiful Spanish course.
Formula 1 teams may only test their cars on real tracks during specific track days before and during the season, they are not allow to do testing at any other time. This is part of the resource restriction agreement, designed to prevent rich teams from spending every day doing expensive track testing, when poorer teams could not afford the luxury of doing that. While I agree with Formula 1 trying to maintain a level playing field between rich and poor (or relatively poor) teams, I think they do so at the expense of technological developments.
The Sauber team had a so-so season in 2011, finishing seventh in the constructors' championship. The car will be raced in 2012 by drivers Sergio Perez and Kamui Kobayashi. In 2011, Perez finished 16th in the driver rankings, while Kobayashi finished 12th.
The team showed their sense of humor with a hilarious Christmas-themed press release that only had one sentence relating to the new car's debut. Keeping with the holiday theme, the team said their "new high-speed sled (aka the Sauber C31-Ferrari) is due to be unwrapped in Jerez on 6 th February 2012."
The other part of the press release talks about the team designing a carbon-fiber Christmas wreath, which used " a pushrod-actuated wishbone construction." and weighs 640 kilograms "(not including candles)." Even the candles seem to be race-ready. They're made from "high-density beeswax, the candles are kept aspirated off-throttle to ensure optimum flame development," a joke making fun of FIA's blown diffuser rule. Sauber CEO Monisha Kaltenborn goes on to poke fun at the strict FIA regulations, saying the round form of the wreath "conforms strictly with Christmas regulations to ensure there aren't any of those seasonal arguments."
A lifetime auto racing fan, Freddy Sherman collects vintage muscle cars and attends races and rally events in the U.S. and around the world. You can follow him on twitter -@thefredsherman
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