WILLIAMS MARTINI RACING TEST REPORT DAY THREE
Chassis / Engine: FW38-02 / PU106C Hybrid
Location: Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, 4.655km
Weather: Warm and Dry
Maximum air & track temps: 19ºC / 25ºC
It has been another productive day. It was good to have Felipe in the car. We are all still learning, as is he. Valtteri has been at track to give us a hand and the drivers have been chatting about their feelings and it has been pretty positive. We have essentially been doing a lot of reliability work today. We did a race simulation with Felipe which we are quite pleased with and now we are pushing on with more performance work to end a fairly solid day. We had to finish slightly early due to an inlet system issue which we are investigating to make sure we are ready to continue our programme on the final day of the test tomorrow.
Today was a good day doing 109 laps, and spending time trying to understand the FW38 for the first time. It is always nice to drive the car and understand areas that are better than the old one, but also keep working on understanding what there is to improve in terms of set-up. There is definitely a lot to do to get the car where we want it but I had a good feeling, and I am sure we are just at the beginning of many improvements. At the very end of the day, unfortunately I had to stop due to an issue in the power unit. We couldn’t finish the programme but we were very close, missing only the final few laps.
ALEXANDER ROSSI SIGNS WITH THE INDYCAR SERIES
Rossi fills out Andretti Autosport driver quartet for 2016: Alexander Rossi has been named as the fourth driver to compete for Andretti Autosport in the 2016 Verizon IndyCar Series. The 24-year-old American will drive the No. 98 Honda, following a merger last week with Bryan Herta Autosport that moved the entry into the Andretti stable.
Rossi boasts an impressive racing portfolio. He drove in five Formula One races in 2015 for Manor while also finishing runner-up in GP2, the top developmental series for aspiring F1 drivers. The California native has made 209 career open-wheel starts, with 42 wins, 75 podiums, 36 poles and an impressive win percentage of 20.1 percent.
“I’m very much looking forward to making my (Verizon) IndyCar Series debut this season and am proud to be racing with a team of such high caliber and pedigree as that of Andretti Autosport,” Rossi said. “As a racer through and through, I cannot wait to get started. Our goal is to be competitive immediately at the first race in St. Petersburg.”
To watch Rossi talk about his opportunity with Andretti Autosport, click here.
Rossi will not participate in the Feb. 26-27 promoter test at Phoenix International Raceway, instead getting his first time in an Indy car March 1 in a private test at Sebring (Fla.) International Raceway. He becomes part of the team that features the last three American-born drivers to race in Formula One, along with team owner Michael Andretti and Andretti’s Global Rallycross driver Scott Speed.
“We’re really excited to have Alexander join the team,” Andretti said. “His credentials speak for his ability and we’re confident he’ll transition seamlessly into Indy car racing. It’s neat to have the last three American F1 drivers in 25 years to be under one roof. I think it speaks to the level of talent we have.”
Rossi joins Marco Andretti, Ryan Hunter-Reay and Carlos Munoz as the team’s drivers in the Verizon IndyCar Series. Herta, a former driver for Andretti, will serve as Rossi’s pit strategist.
“I’m really pleased at how well all these pieces have come into place for this group,” said Herta. “Adding Alex as a driver is going from strength to strength for us. We can’t wait to get on track together and start our preparation for the 2016 season.”
SAHARA FORCE INDIA BARCELONA TEST REPORT DAY ONE
INTRODUCING THE RB12
THE VF-16, HAAS F1 TEAM’S FIRST RACECAR, HAS ARRIVED
The origin of naming the car “VF-16” goes back to the first CNC machine manufactured by Haas Automation, the VF-1, launched in 1988. The “V” stands for vertical, which is an industry standard designation for a vertical mill. Gene Haas, founder of Haas Automation, added “F1” to the name to unofficially designate it as the company’s “Very First One”.
Now as chairman of Haas F1 Team, the “F1” moniker of that first machine takes on new significance as Haas joins the 2016 FIA Formula One World Championship, becoming the first American-led Formula One team in 30 years.
“From an international standpoint, Formula One is the highest echelon of racing, and Haas Automation builds the highest-quality machine tools,” said Haas, who has grown Haas Automation into the largest machine tool builder in North America with more than $1 billion in annual sales. “When you hear ‘F1’ you know exactly what it is – a global racing series that showcases the latest technology and attracts the best talent in engineering and design. Haas Automation has an excellent reputation in the United States and I want that reputation to grow worldwide. Connecting Haas Automation with F1 in name and in practice is the best way to grow our business and elevate Haas Automation to a premium, global brand.”
The dark gray, light gray and red-toned livery of the VF-16 was derived from the scheme of Haas Automation’s complete line of vertical and horizontal machining centers, turning centers and rotary tables and indexers. Approximately 1,300 employees encompass Haas Automation, with the Oxnard, California-based company exporting those machines to more than 60 countries. The VF-16 showcases Haas Automation’s commitment to technology and innovation to a passionate, global audience.
“Just as Haas Automation’s products continually evolve, becoming better and more efficient, our methodology behind the VF-16 was to make it the best evolution of a good F1 car,” said Guenther Steiner, team principal, Haas F1 Team. “We’re a new team, so we looked at what the successful teams were doing to give us a baseline of the direction we needed to go with our design.
“We have very experienced designers who worked hard to develop all the little things from an aerodynamic perspective that, collectively, add up to a lot. And our technical partner, Ferrari, provided our power unit, and that really defined the rear end of the car and how big it needed to be.
“Our goal with this car is to score points,” Steiner states. “First, we need to go out there and show that we can do the job, that we can finish races, that we are respected by the fans and other teams in the paddock. Then, we want to score points. That is the ultimate goal.”
The VF-16 tests at Barcelona Feb. 22-25 and again March 1-4 before its debut race, the season-opening Australian Grand Prix March 20 in Melbourne.