Alfa Romeo is set to return to Formula One racing.
The fabled Quadrifoglio (that’s four-leafed clover in Alfa Romeo) will once again grace the sides of an F1 racing team for the 2018 season. The return marks the culmination of a partnership with Ferrari, Alfa’s sister brand, resulting in a sponsorship deal that sees Alfa take on a technical role in the current Sauber team.
Sauber has struggled to find purchase in last year’s races, rarely ascending above the middle of the pack. But with a new year comes a new team sponsor and, most importantly, a new car.
"We have put lots of effort and hard work into the C37 over the last few months, and it is fantastic to be launching the new car today,” said Team Principal Frédéric Vasseur.
“Our target ahead of 2018 is clear: We have to catch up with the field and to continue improving our performance during the course of the season. We have put lots of energy and commitment into the development of the C37. I want to thank our partners and fans for their continuous support. The return of Alfa Romeo to Formula 1 sets another milestone in the team’s history, and I am proud that such a historical brand has chosen us for their return to the sport. We are eager to start the 2018 season as the Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Team.”
In case you were worried the switch to Alfa Romeo will mean a total overhaul of the car (and the possibility of becoming afflicted by Alfa’s legendary ability to break down) then have to fear: the car is still powered by a Ferrari engine, and Alfa will mostly fill in the rest.
Technical Director Jörg Zander spoke at length regarding the new car and how it’s vastly improved over the previous year’s model. "The 2018 challenger is the result of the hard work that everyone in the factory has put in over the last few months.”
Speaking about the C37, the car philosophy is much different to that of the C36. The aerodynamic concept has changed significantly, and the C37 has several new features in comparison to its predecessor. We are positive that the new concept offers us more opportunities and will help us to make improvements during the course of the season."
Let’s hope the new car, and the new badge will take Alfa Romeo far in this year’s season.