Ferrari Set To Return To The US.
Ferrari aims to be a race winner and a championship contender this season. Last year the Ferrari was only competitive at certain tracks, but in 2012 the team wants to be fighting at the front at every track including the Circuit of The Americas which will host the United States Grand Prix in Austin, Texas on November 18.
“I really believe in the skills we have here in Ferrari,” Fernando Alonso said after he and teammate Felipe Massa uncovered the new Ferrari F2012 via a webcast from the team’s factory in Maranello, Italy. “We always have to be optimistic. We have two months to get ready before the first race in Australia. We have to fight for the title and try and get as many points as possible at every race.
“And we want to win. I am not talking about only the Drivers’ but also the Constructors’ Championship. We really, really want to be right at the top of the ranking. There is intense work ahead, and many months (of traveling) around the world. We have to be as consistent and resolute as possible. We have to work with the team. I am really sure that we will be able to get great targets.”
The F1 season, which begins in Australia on March 18 and ends in Brazil on November 25, has races at traditional tracks as well as new venues that have been added to the schedule in recent years. Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo said the addition of new countries such as India as well as a going back to the United States is crucial for F1.
“It is good, very good,” he said. “We have been in the recent years in the Emirates and Korea, and we will go to Russia. For F1, the teams, the sponsors, and car manufacturers to really see a world-wide sport is crucial. F1 was once mainly South America, Japan and Europe. The next step now is [to return to] the United States.”
Alonso finished fourth in the 2011 Formula One World Drivers’ Championship while Massa ended up sixth. Ferrari took third in the Constructors’ Championship.
“It is my third season at Ferrari and I am going to start with the same strength and determination,” said Alonso who scored one victory in 2011. “I really want to do great. Of course it is going to be quite competitive and challenging for the season, but I really want to see red cars always on the podium. Always winning. So we start (testing) next week in Jerez (Spain) and we keep working all together. I am sure we will do great this year. We have to be as consistent and resolute as possible, and I am sure, really, really sure we will be able to get great targets.”
The Ferrari F2012 is the 58th F1 car to be produced by the team which has competed in every season since the modern Formula One World Championship era began in 1950. The car incorporates the new regulation changes that ban the exhaust-blown rear diffuser and require the front nose section to be lower than last year. It features front and rear pull-rod suspension systems which improve aerodynamic performance and lower the center of gravity. A prominent aspect of the car’s bodywork is the step leading to the nosecone.
“The nose has an ungainly shape on the top,” chief designer Nikolas Tombazis said. “That is the result of the regulation that requires us to have the nose quite low, and the aerodynamic desire to have the lower part of the chassis as high as possible. So even though it is aesthetically not very pleasing, we believe it is the most efficient aerodynamic solution for that area of the car.”
“It looks really, really aggressive,” Massa said of the F2102. “I know that there has been plenty of brainstorming – we have exchange a lot of ideas – when it comes to the new car. We always wanted to develop new models and do more, and we are ready to start a different season. So I am impressed with the new team and the new car. I am sure that the whole season will be a top season from the very beginning to the end. I know that it will be a challenge once again for the whole team. We start (testing) in (Spain) a few days. I am sure the championship will be stunning and very competitive with the red Ferrari at number one.”
Team principal Stefano Domenicali is equally confident.
“I am sure our car will be winning right from the beginning,” he said. “We have learned many lessons from the past, and taken some difficult decisions. But I am sure all our efforts will be represented with this car. From a technical point of view, we have many novelties in terms of mechanics and also the shape of the car. We (also) wanted some continuity here, and hopefully we will reach the right performance. We have only 12 days (of testing) to work on the car and achieve reliability, and also test the new tires that have been given to us by Pirelli.”
The team has paid special attention to many key details regarding the new car and the new season.
“I am sure that we will be rewarded,” di Montezemolo said. “We and our fans and supporters want to see us back to a great glory. I am sure that this will be a ‘red’ season and that ‘red’ will be prevailing. I am sure that we will make a big effort and get to the right targets. We have a long way to go, and we have plenty of hope and optimism for the future.”
In order to reserve your spot on the official Circuit of The Americas waitlist for suite and select seating opportunities, a $100 per account deposit and contact information must be submitted at the following link: http://bit.ly/SelectSeatingDeposit
Members of the Select Seating Waitlist will be first in line to buy Premium Seating at the Circuit of The Americas when it goes on sale March 1st. Select Seating includes a variety of premium features: covered seating, great sightlines, priority parking, food and beverage options and more. If you are not interested in Select Seating opportunities, stay tuned for future announcements
By Dan Knutson