Autoblog season preview 2011: Force India, Toro Rosso, Sauber
The new Formula One season gets underway in a couple of days, and as usual, we wonder who the favourites are? Autoblog UK takes a look at the strengths and weaknesses of all twelve teams.
The Indian team has its first home Grand Prix coming up and in 2011, will probably again occupy a position in the upper middle range of the field. German driver Adrian Sutil is of the same opinion but sees some potential for upward movement, as he was very pleased with testing. However, he commented: "We must be even quicker and still need some more time to understand the changes to the car's aerodynamics." Perhaps in 2011, there'll be a repeat of their 2009 Charge of the Light Brigade, when Force India bagged pole position at Spa.
Red Bull's sister team could emerge as 2011's rising star. During testing in Barcelona, they posted some excellent times in the new STR6 that has been developed in-house for the second time only by the Italian outfit. The team achieved fast times as a result of their extra experience. Toro Rosso will keep their driver line-up of Sebastien Buemi and Jaime Alguersuari. Technical Director Giorgio Ascanelli said bullishly, "By the end of the year, we want to be at least eighth in the constructors' standings."
After a successful conclusion to testing in the winter of 2010, the Sauber team had been very optimistic about the season. This optimism wasn't in any way justified. So for 2011, Sauber are being a little bit more reticent, despite posting similar good times in Jerez and Barcelona. At any rate, they've tried not to repeat the mistakes of the past with the new C30. What's more, they have a young pair of drivers: Kamui Kobayashi and 2010 GP2 runner-up Sergio Perez.