Photo courtesy Sahara Force India Formula 1Enlarge Photo
The Formula 1 unveiling season is in full stream mode this month as teams prepare for the coming 2012 season. Sahara Force India Formula One Team had drivers Paul Di Resta and Nico Hulkenberg pull the covers from its new VJM05 at the Silverstone circuit in Northampton, UK today as reserve driver Jules Bianchi looked on.
This new car is the second created through the design team formed by technical director Andrew Green; with the VM05 the Force India team seeks to build on its sixth place finish in the 2011 Constructors' championship and "take the fight to the teams that lie ahead," a statement vowed.
Green's approach to design of the 2012 machine was one of refinement. "The car looks more refined, a lot racier and a lot more purposeful. You can start to see the aerodynamic concepts coming through now," he said. "It looks quite a bit different to the previous years and so far the performance in the [wind] tunnel has been very encouraging."
"We have set our sights on challenging for fifth place," Dr Vijay Mallya, team principal and managing director said. "To do so, we will need to begin the new campaign by delivering the kind of form we showed in the second half of 2011. I believe this is a realistic goal and that we have the talent and determination to realize these ambitions."
Otmar Szafnauer, who is the team's chief operating officer praised the team's efforts to further its bid up the ladder of F1 teams. "The new car has come together nicely over the winter. We don't know what our competitors have done," he confessed, "but we've made some gains and believe we're in reasonable shape. It's going to be difficult in the midfield, but our focus is on starting strongly and improving our position from last season."
As in the past, the new VJM05 Sahara Force India race cars have Mercedes engines with gearbox supplied by McLaren Applied Technologies. For the second season, the team's KERS unit is supplied by Mercedes.
Returning for a second year with the Sahara Force India F1 team, Scotsman Paul Di Resta, a cousin of four-time IZOD IndyCar Series champion and two-time Indianapolis 500 winner Dario Franchitti relished the excitement of seeing the new car complete for the first time. "It's when you realize that all the waiting is finally over and the season is beginning for real!
"I've had a good winter and recharged my batteries," Di Resta said. "Now I'm fully focused on 2012 and looking forward to the start of testing. There's a really positive feeling in the team, good stability and hopefully we can pick up where we left off at the end of the year."