2006 Bahrain Grand Prix - Race 1/18

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Honda Test/Reserve Driver - Anthony Davidson



Date of birth: 18/04/1979
Place of birth: Hemel Hempstead, England
Lives: Hemel Hempstead, England
Marital status: Single
Height: 1.67m
Weight: 55kg

Driven for:
BAR (Test driver) (2004-2006)
Minardi (2002)

Website: http://www.anthonydavidson.info/


Biography
1999 Kart (turned pro 1997)
1999 Formula Ford Zetec Winter Series, Champion (5 wins from 7 starts, all pole position), Formula Ford Festival, Champion (1600cc class)
2000 Wins Autosport/McLaren Young Driver of the Year
2000 British Formula Ford Zetec Championship Formula Ford Festival, Champion
2001 F1 Tests: Lucky Strike BAR Honda
2001 FIA European F3: Champion
2001 British Formula 3: 2nd (6 wins, 6 poles)
2002 F1: KL Minardi Asiatech, 2 races
2002 F1 Tests: Lucky Strike BAR Honda
2003 F1 Tests: Lucky Strike BAR Honda
2004 F1: Lucky Strike BAR Honda
2004 F1 Tests: Lucky Strike BAR Honda
2005 F1: Lucky Strike BAR Honda, 1 race
2005 F1 Tests: Lucky Strike BAR Honda, Jordan Grand Prix
2006 F1 Tests: Honda Racing F1 Team

Like most racing drivers, Davidson started racing in karts in 1987, racing in various British, European and North American championships. In 1999 he moved to cars, racing Formula Fords and winning the McLaren/Autosport Young Driver of the Year Award in 2000. In 2001 he competed in the European and British Formula Three championships, winning the former and coming runner-up in the latter. In this year he became the test driver for BAR, whilst in 2002 he started two races for Minardi, retiring from them both.

In 2004 BAR were able to run a third car in Friday morning testing, and Davidson was given the honour. He frequently impressed with his pace, although some have questioned the validity of these times as a raw indicator due to the lack of need to conserve the car in the way the race drivers Button and Sato did. Contrary to popular rumour, only 2 of his fast times were set on light fuel - a fact his father has repeated many times on internet forums.

In November 2004, BAR announced that it had failed to come to an acceptable contractual agreement with Williams to allow Davidson to drive for the latter team in 2005 (because Williams would not agree to his unconditional "repatriation" to BAR in 2006). Given BAR's long-term contract on Davidson, his chance of securing a race seat for 2005 was therefore called into serious doubt. He was given the opportunity to fill in for an ailing Takuma Sato at the 2005 Malaysian Grand Prix, but his Honda engine expired into flames just two laps into the event.

Anthony undoubtedly deserves to be given a platform to display his outstanding talents to the full. This may come in the form of the new Super Aguri Team at some point in 2006 or beyond. If so, then he should be judged against his team mate at that point, as that can only ever be the TRUE yardstick of any driver. Anthony is extremely highly regarded by Honda, and it could be that this giant has yet to be awakened.

Statistics - Prior to 2006 Season
Drivers' Titles: 0
Seasons in F1: 1
Grand Prix: 3
Wins: 0
Points: 0
Poles: 0
Fastest Laps: 0

Best result in 2005: Ret (Malaysia)
Best qualifying 2005: 15th (Malaysia)
Worst qualifying 2005: 15th (Malaysia)
Average grid position: 15
2005: Out-qualified Jenson Button 0 times
2005: Completed: 2 out of 57 laps (3.51%)
2005: Finished 0 times from 1 start (0%)
 
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Team HQ
Based in: Milton Keynes, UK
Founded: 2005 (active since 2005)

Red Bull Racing
Bradbrourne Drive
Tilbrook
Milton Keynes
Buckinghamshire
NK7 8BJ

Tel: 01908 279700
Fax: 01908 279711

Website: www.redbullracing.com

Team Structure

Sporting director: Christian Horner
Technical operations director: Günther Steiner
Technical director: Mark Smith
Chief technical officer: Adrian Newey
Chief designer: Rob Taylor
Chief aerodynamics: Ben Agathangelou

Team Biography
Red Bull Racing was formed from the Jaguar team in November 2004, following Ford's decision to exit F1...

Jaguar though originated from the Stewart Grand Prix team in 2000, the latter first appearing on the F1 scene in a blaze of publicity at the start of the 1997 season.

With Jackie Stewart's business connections and race record, and the might of the Ford corporation behind it, outsiders expected a lot of Stewart Grand Prix, Jackie himself however was more realistic. Second place at Monaco in only its fifth race would have been more than he expected.

The team then suffered a spate of dramatic, and expensive, engine failures later in the season as Ford strived to match its rivals. No further points finishes were achieved by Rubens Barrichello and Jan Magnussen, and the Dane only managed to retain his place with a handful of improved performances towards the end of the season.

The team was the subject of rumours concerning its financial position in the off-season, but Stewart bounced back with the announcement of deals with the American MCI and Lear Corporations. With heavily revised Ford engines and an innovative carbon-fibre gearbox, Stewart Grand Prix looked set to improve on its maiden season.

The same driver line-up started the 1998 season but, save for two point scoring finishes in Canada, the year was disappointing. Magnussen may have opened his F1 account with sixth in Montreal, but was replaced by Dutch driver Jos Verstappen from France onwards as a consequence of his lacklustre performance. Verstappen fared little better, however, and it was often left to Barrichello to carry the Stewart flag.

Unsurprisingly, the Brazilian remained in place for 1999 although, for a while, he was being mentioned in connection with a move to Williams. His new partner was Johnny Herbert, who transferred from Sauber, and the pair hoped to raise both the morale and the mood in Milton Keynes. The attractive new SF-3 chassis looked the part and, early problems aside, performed well. Barrichello, as expected, looked the more likely to score points, and took pole in France, but it was Herbert who popped up to win the team's first - and only - GP at the Nurburgring in September. He then went on to out-point his Brazilian team-mate in the final few races and ensured that his career received another shot at redemption.

Barrichello jumped at the chance to replace Eddie Irvine at Ferrari for 2000, and the two swapped seats with the Irishman joining Herbert at the renamed Jaguar Racing team. Taken over by Ford at the Canadian GP in 1999, the Stewart name disappeared after just three seasons, to be replaced by one of the most evocative in British motorsport.

Testing of the new R1, the first ever Jaguar F1 car, was a mixed bag for both drivers, but the new Cosworth CR2 engine was among the lightest and most powerful on the grid.

Just one year after BAR's calamatous entry into the sport, Jaguar's first year of GP racing was little more successful though with their only points coming from Irvine's gutsy fourth spot in Monaco. The cars were slow and reliability left a lot to be desired and the team was dealt a bitter blow when Paul Stewart revealed he had cancer and was forced to leave the team. Herbert's F1 career ended on a sour note with a pointless year and a nasty crash in his final race at Malaysia when the suspension broke.

The big news over the winter months was the arrival of Champcar team-boss and Indy 500 winner Bobby Rahal as principal, and the hopes of the British team rested largely on his shoulders.

The R2 was built to be more reliable than its predecessor, but its extra solidity brought with it a natural burden. Whilst many believed that Rahal had what it took to turn the team around, ultimately a lack of success saw him removed in a coup led by three-time world champion Niki Lauda.

The team started the 2001 campaign with Eddie Irvine and Luciano Burti, then signed Pedro de la Rosa as a test driver when he was dumped by Arrows. By the time of the Spanish Grand Prix, Burti had been moved onto Prost, allowing de la Rosa - who opted out of a deal with the French team - to take over his race seat.

As in 2000, the season was largely disappointing, but punctuated with brighter moments, among them Irvine's sparkling third place at Monaco. That the team had to wait until round seven to open its account summed it all up, however. The Irishman ended the year with six points, de la Rosa with three, leaving Jaguar eight out of eleven.

For 2002, Irvine and de la Rosa remained on board, with Lauda at the helm full-time. However the new R3 was a disaster and there was talk, early on of reverting to the R2, as the R3 was a complete dog.

The team started the year well though and Irvine took fourth place in Australia. However this was not down to the car, more the fact half the field was knocked out following a massive pile-up at the start. The team then had to wait until Belgium in September to score another point, before an inspired drive at the Italian GP from Irv, when he qualified fifth and finished third ended the year on a high.

During the off-season though several changes took place. First up was the outfit's decision to opt for an all-new driver line-up. So it was out with Irvine and de la Rosa, and in with former Minardi driver, Mark Webber and ex-Williams test driver Antonio Pizzonia.

Then a number of weeks later, in mid-October came the shock news that Lauda himself had been axed, the fourth team boss at the team to leave since the outfit was formed in 2000.

Tony Purnell thus took over the poisoned chalice, as the head of Ford's Premier Performance Division [PPD] - comprising the Jaguar F1 team, Cosworth Racing and Pi research. His job was not easy, but 2003 brought results, and more importantly respect for the Ford owned team.

Mark Webber was certainly an asset and the Aussie was easily the undisputed number one driver at the team by the end of the season, scoring 17 points in total, with a string of sixth and seventh place finishes - not to mention some top notch qualifying efforts.

Webber's team-mates though didn't have it so easy, Antonio Pizzonia lasted until the German GP, when Justin Wilson was brought in as his replacement. The Englishman though fared little better, and despite notching up an eighth place finish at the US GP was eventually dropped, as economics dictated a change.

Jaguar notched up 18 points in total in 2003, on route to seventh in the constructors', and there was a real feeling of progress at the Milton Keynes based squad, and a sense that the 2004 year's car, the R5, might allow them to continue to move up the grid.

Winter testing was mixed however, and Jaguar desperate for cash, signed new boy Christian Klien to partner Webber. The Austrian, who impressed in the International F3 Euro Series the year before, was backed by Red Bull and was rumoured to be worth around £4-6 million.

The season though was far from successful, and following the promise of 2003, 2004 was far tougher - both on and off the track.

In total the team managed just 10 points, narrowly beating Toyota to seventh place in the Constructors'. Webber was again the team leader, scoring all but 3 of their haul, but it was off-track that the outfits' real problems emerged.

Ford's decision to sell the outfit, along with Cosworth, in September 2004, threatened to end the Milton Keynes based squad, and while it had been rumoured, Ford might just re-brand the team - Ford Racing - under financial pressure, the 'Blue Oval' elected to get out of F1 completely.

Although the teams' future was uncertain in the following months, in November, Red Bull, owner, Dietrich Mateschitz, came to the rescue, taking over the team, and in the process realising his own long-term dream, of owning his own F1 operation.

Red Bull Racing then signed David Coulthard at the end of 2004 to lead the team and in early January appointed Christian Horner to replace Tony Purnell as team boss - a move that surprised many, as it was thought that Red Bull would retain the Jaguar management. David Pitchforth was also removed, to be replaced by Guenther Steiner, who ironically was the technical director at Jaguar from 2001-2002, but was dismissed as it was deemed he didn't have enough F1 know-how.

During 2005 Coulthard was partnered by Klien and Vitantonio Liuzzi, the latter two having to 'seat-share' the second car. However while early on in the season it was thought they would both contest roughly the same amount of races, as the year went on this turned out not to be the case, and Liuzzi in fact did just four events.

Red Bull surprised many in '05, scoring points in 11 of the 19 races and ending the season with 34 points in total - 14 more than Sauber who took eighth place in the constructors' and just 4 less than BAR-Honda, who were sixth. DC, as one would expect, scored the majority of the points - 24 - and took the team's two best finishes, when he was 4th at the Australian GP and 4th at the Nurburgring.

Red Bull also bought the Minardi team towards the end of the season, re-branding it Scuderia Toro Rosso for 2006. STR will effectively be the Red Bull 'junior' team, and will provide an outlet for some of the other Red Bull backed drivers', namely Liuzzi, who is 'transferred' and Scott Speed.

Red Bull's 'senior' team meanwhile will stick with Coulthard and Klien in '06, while former Minardi man, Robert Doornbos, will take on the Friday test role. RBR will also switch to using Ferrari engines, after agreeing a deal early on in 2005.

Statistics - Prior to 2006 Season
Drivers' Titles: 0
Constructors' Titles: 0
Seasons in F1: 1
Grand Prix: 18
Wins: 0
Points: 34
Poles: 0
Fastest Laps: 0

Best result in 2005: 4th - Coulthard (Australia and Europe)
Best qualifying 2005: 4th - Klien (Japan)
Worst qualifying 2005: 16th - Coulthard (2 times) Klien (3 times) Liuzzi (1 time)
2005 Average grid position: Klien (11) Coulthard (11.26) Liuzzi (13.2)
2005: Coulthard out-qualified Klien 7 times
2005: Coulthard out-qualified Liuzzi 4 times
2005: Klien out-qualified Coulthard 8 times
2005: Completed: 1708 out of 2214 laps (77.15%)
2005: Finished 27 times from 36 starts (75%)


rbr2.jpg



RB2 Technical Specifications
Details not available at this time

Dimensions
Details not available at this time

Ferrari Type 056
Number of cylinders: 8
Cylinder block in cast aluminium V90 degrees
Number of valves: 32
Pneumatic distribution
Total displacement: 2398 cm3
Magneti Marelli digital electronic injection
Magneti Marelli static electronic ignition
Fuel Shell V-Power ULG 59
Lubricant Shell SL-0932
 
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No 14 - David Coulthard


Date of birth: 27/03/1971
Place of birth: Twynholm, Scotland
Lives: Monte Carlo
Marital status: Single
Height: 1.82m
Weight: 75kg

Driven for:
WilliamsF1 (1994-1995)
McLaren (1996-2004)
Red Bull (2005-2006)

Website: http://www.davidcoulthard.com/

Biography
1990 Winner of the McLaren Autosport Young Driver Of The Year award.
1991 Runner-up in the British Formula 3 Championship. Wins the 'European Marlboro Masters of Formula 3' and the Macau Grand Prix.
1993 Test driver for Williams-Renault. Finishes third in the FIA International Formula 3000 Championship with Paul Stewart Racing. GT Class Winner at the Le Mans 24 Hours with Jaguar.
1994 Promoted from test driver to race driver at Williams, following the tragic death of Ayrton Senna.
1995 Wins first Grand Prix in Portugal, and finishes third in the Drivers' Championship.
1996 Moves to McLaren. Finishes second in Monaco and seventh in the Drivers' Championship.
1997 Victory in Australia and Italy sees him take third place in the Drivers' Championship.
1998 Takes one victory and six second places helping McLaren take the Constructors' Championship.
1999 Two victories but fourth in the Drivers' Championship.
2000 Third in the Driver's Championship, 73 points putting him just eight behind team mate Mika Hakkinen.
2001 Stays at McLaren where he claims runner-up spot in the Drivers' Championship.
2002 Coulthard finishes in fifth place in the Drivers' Championship, and wins in Monaco.
2003 Wins the opening round in Australia, but then consistently out-performed by his team mate. Finishes seventh in the drivers' championship.
2004 Ends McLaren career with lowest ever championship position. A fourth in Germany is his best race result. Defies critics by signing with new Red Bull team for 2005.
2005 Fully justifies Red Bull race seat, scoring 24 of the team's 34 points. Quick and consistent, claiming fifth on the grid and fourth place Melbourne, and again just missing out on a podium in Europe.

A fast starter in all senses of the word, David Coulthard has benefited from driving for two of the sports leading teams during his time in Formula One. Cool, unflappable and blessed with good looks, David has become a firm favourite with the fans.

As with most current F1 pilots, the young Coulthard enjoyed a successful karting career. Countless victories provided an ideal stepping stone into the 1989 British Formula Ford series, where he promptly secured the Star of Tomorrow title. This success also resulted in the Scot becoming the first recipient of the prestigious McLaren/Autosport Young Driver of the Year Award.

Moving into Formula Vauxhall Lotus for 1990, Coulthard looked likely to repeat his success, only for a leg-breaking shunt at Anderstorp in Sweden to blunt his campaign. Nevertheless, fourth overall in the British series, and fifth in Europe, confirmed Coulthard's ability.

A British F3 campaign with the Paul Stewart Racing team pitted Coulthard against GM Lotus Euroseries rival Rubens Barrichello. Despite scoring more race wins than the Brazilian, Coulthard was forced to settle for second overall, but more than made up for the disappointment by winning two of the world's three most celebrated F3 at Macau and Zandvoort.

Two seasons in the International F3000 championship failed to provide Coulthard with a title, but he carved out a reputation as a hard racer who could win from anywhere. His first win in the category came with Pacific Racing in 1992, en route to third overall in the championship.

As well as competing in F3000, Coulthard was proving immensely valuable as a test driver. Succeeding Mark Blundell and Damon Hill at Williams, David was in the right place to inherit Ayrton Senna's seat following the Brazilian's fatal accident at Imola in 1994. A part season - shared with former Williams star Nigel Mansell - was enough to convince the team to hire him full-time for the 1995 season, alongside Damon Hill.

A full season with one of the sport's leading teams was spoiled by illness, which restricted David to a single victory in Portugal. Nevertheless, a string of consistent finishes and near misses saw David finish third overall.

A move to McLaren followed, but the team was still recovering through the post-Senna years which had made it the most successful team in Formula One. The hard work put in by both Coulthard and team-mate Mika Hakkinen eventually returned the team to the sharp end of the grid, and netted David historic victories in Australia and Italy during the 1997 season.

In 1998, the McLaren team proved once-and-for-all that it was a force to be reckoned with in F1, as Hakkinen went on to turn eight race wins into a championship crown. Coulthard, however, had a more trying season and, apart from taking victory in San Marino, he was called on to play second fiddle to his team-mate's championship challenge.

For 1999, McLaren retained the same driver line-up. Hakkinen's first words to Coulthard as he stepped from his championship-winning drive in Japan suggested that this season would be David's chance for glory, but it wasn't to be as the Scotsman suffered a combination of mechanical problems and the odd accident. He did win twice, however, at home in Britain and beating Hakkinen head-to-head at Spa to finish fourth in the title race.

Given the solid working relationship between its two drivers, McLaren again kept both Coulthard and Hakkinen for 2000. As in 1999, the Scot harboured hopes that this would be his year, and vowed to devote even more of his time in pursuit of the title, but was ultimately beaten by team-mate Hakkinen, Michael Schumacher and a run of relatively poor finishes late in the year.

The 2001 campaign brought forth much the same optimistic claims from the Coulthard camp, and the Scot, charged with much of the pre-season testing of the new MP4-16, remained confident that he could take the championship fight to Schumacher Sr.

Again, he got the better of team-mate Hakkinen in the early exchanges, finishing second to the world champion in Australia and then beating - and passing - him in a straight fight to win round three in Brazil. Another win in Austria appeared to set Coulthard up for a shot at the title, before Monaco summed all that was wrong with his - and McLaren's - season.

Having seen off both Schumacher and Hakkinen in a tense battle for pole in the Principality, the Scot was left thumping his steering wheel in frustration when his car quit on the grid. Starting at the very back, he then caused uproar by claiming that backmarker Enrique Bernoldi should have moved over for him, before going on to take a hard-earned fifth.

Out of the top two until Belgium thereafter - while Schumacher took four wins - Coulthard's second spot came under threat from Barrichello, before the Scot consolidated his best ever finish in the title race.

Paired with a new team-mate for 2002 - in the shape of Finnish sensation Kimi Raikkonen - Coulthard was eager to take the challenge to Ferrari. It was not to be though and DC was forced initially to battle with the Renault's, rather than Ferrari and Williams, before the team recovered by the season end.

Coulthard scored 41 points during the year, and despite feeling the pressure from his younger team-mate in qualifying, maintained the upper hand in the races - his best moment coming at the Monaco GP, when he took his (and the team's) sole victory of 2002.

Coulthard remained at McLaren in 2003 however it was a bitterly disappointing season, which although started on a high with a win in Australia, witnessed him struggling with the new single lap qualifying. All in all, DC would notch up 51 points - 40 less than his team-mate, and finish seventh in the drivers' championship. His best result post-Australia, a second in Germany and a third in Japan. What made it all the worse, was that his team-mate, Raikkonen was battling for the championship, and all this in just his third year in F1.

DC's ninth and final season with McLaren, following their decision to replace him with Juan Pablo Montoya in 2005, wasn't particularly rosy either.

The Scot was again outscored and generally outperformed by Raikkonen, ending the season with 21 points less than the Finn. Granted in the early part of the year the MP4-19 wasn't very good, however even then he failed to get as much from it as Kimi, a situation that continued with the MP4-19B. Coulthard scored 24 points in total, to end the year, joint ninth in the drivers' standings. There was no wins though, and worse still, no podiums. His best result a fourth place finish at the German GP, hardly anything to boast about.

Although DC's future looked uncertain, he eventually secured a drive with Red Bull Racing for 2005 - and revitalised his career, scoring 24 points during the season and ending the year 12th in the drivers' championship. Indeed the Scot finished in the points on nine occasions, his best results two fourth places finishes - in Australia and at the Nurburgring. The Milton Keynes based team thus rewarded him with an extension to his one-year deal and DC will again be a Red Bull Racing driver in 2006, when the team will be powered by Ferrari engines and further boosted by the arrival of ace designer, Adrian Newey.

Statistics - Prior to 2006 Season
Drivers' Titles: 0
Seasons in F1: 12
Grand Prix: 193
Wins: 13
Points: 499
Poles: 12
Fastest Laps: 18

Best result in 2005: 4th (Australia and Europe)
Best qualifying 2005: 5th (Australia)
Worst qualifying 2005: 16th (USA and Brazil)
Average grid position: 11.26
2005: Out-qualified Christian Klien 7 times
2005: Out-qualified Tonio Liuzzi 4 times
2005: Completed: 878 out of 1107 laps (79.31%)
2005: Finished 14 times from 18 starts (78%)


No 15 - Christian Klien


Date of birth: 07/02/1983
Place of birth: Hohenems, Austria
Lives: Hohenems, Austria
Marital status: Single
Height: 1.69m
Weight: 68kg

Driven for:
Jaguar (2004)
Red Bull Racing (2005-2006)

Website: http://www.christian-klien.com/

Biography
1999 Formula BMW ADAC Junior Cup – fourth in series with four wins.
2000 Formula BMW ADAC – tenth in championship and third in the rookie standings.
2001 Formula BMW ADAC – third in championship with five wins.
2002 German Formula Renault champion with five wins and five pole positions. Fifth and best rookie in Formula Renault Eurocup.
2003 Formula 3 Euro – second in series, with four wins, nine podiums, seven poles and four fastest laps. Wins Marlboro Masters at Zandvoort.
2004 Debut Formula One season with Jaguar. Scores only points with a sixth place in Spa.
2005 Acquits himself well against more experienced Red Bull team mate David Coulthard, out-qualifying the Scot eight times in 15 races. Best finish a fifth in China.

Originally attracted to skiing as he was born into the heart of Austria's alpine region, Christian Klien eventually decided to live out his love of speed on four wheels.

The surrounding mountains provided the perfect playground for the young Klien, and it appeared that he may look to have a future in ski racing - until his father took him to a local kart race! Immediately bitten by the motorsport bug, Christian persuaded dad to buy him a kart of his own and the next three years touring Austria and Switzerland as he gained experience and, gradually, began to win trophies, including the Swiss junior title in 1996.

As soon as he was old enough, however, Klien moved into cars, starting with the 1999 Formula BMW Junior Cup in neighbouring Germany. He began with a bang, winning his first ever car race at the Sachsenring, before adding a further four victories en route to fourth in the overall standings.

The following year, he moved into the full ADAC FBMW series with Team Rosberg, overseen by 1982 F1 world champion Keke Rosberg. Regular top ten finishes were not enough to challenge for the title, but Klien was learning all the time and, in 2001, became a regular on the top step of the podium as he raced to third overall in the championship.

Formula Renault provided the next step, and Klien managed to squeeze in an Italian winter campaign with JD Motorsport before staying with the team for the full 2002 German championship. Again proving to be a quick learner, the Austrian won four races that season, eventually running out as overall champion. He also contested selected Eurocup races but, despite being the best-placed newcomer, could not gain enough points to rise above fifth overall.

With Formula Renault conquered, Klien moved up again the following season, joining the respected Mücke Motorsport team for the F3 Euroseries. Despite his inexperience with the more technical cars, the Austrian quickly proved to be one of the season's frontrunners and, while Australian Ryan Briscoe effectively dominated the points' race, Klien managed to sneak four race wins and five other podiums to end the season as runner-up. His biggest moment, however, came in the non-championship Marlboro Masters at Zandvoort where, against an elite international field, he controlled the race from the front and took the title.

Despite being expected to either shoot for the Euroseries title or graduate to the FIA F3000 series, Klien received an unexpected chance to jump straight into Formula One. His inclusion on the renowned Red Bull Junior Team programme had already marked him out as a prospective grand prix driver of the future, but brand owner Dietrich Mateschitz pushed for the Austrian to be included in the Jaguar Racing line-up for 2004 and, as a sponsorship deal between the two parties was looming, Klien was hired to partner Mark Webber.

The gulf between F3 and F1 initially appeared to have too wide for Klien to bridge, and he struggled to match his team-mate in the early races. A spate of mid-season retirements led to calls for him to be stood down in favour of more experienced alternatives - with McLaren's Alex Wurz among those mentioned - but Klien kept his head and raised his game as the year went on, eventually claiming his first F1 points for sixth place in Belgium.

With Red Bull buying out the ailing Jaguar team for 2005, Klien's place in F1 was never in doubt. Ironically, however, his place in the first choice line-up was questioned, with many within the team looking to run newly-crowned FIA F3000 champion - and fellow Red Bull Junior - Vitantonio Liuzzi alongside David Coulthard.

In the end, Mateschitz suggested that the two young guns 'seat share', with Klien running the first three races of the year, and Liuzzi drafted in for the following four. Klien was then re-called and although he spent much of the rest of the year, wondering whether or not Liuzzi would get a second spell, the Italian never did and Klien kept the seat from the Canadian GP onwards, ending the season having scored 9 points in total - following top eight finishes in Australia, Malaysia, Canada, Turkey and China.

His reward was 15th place overall in the drivers' championship and confirmation that he would keep the drive in 2006, with Liuzzi transferred to Red Bull's new junior team - Scuderia Toro Rosso, formerly Minardi.

2006 promises to be an interesting season for Klien, and while he should be more settled, safe in the knowledge that he will do all the races rather than 'seat share', he will need to match Coulthard more regularly if he is to continue to progress.

Statistics - Prior to 2006 Season
Drivers' Titles: 0
Seasons in F1: 2
Grand Prix: 32
Wins: 0
Points: 12
Poles: 0
Fastest Laps: 0

Best result in 2005: 5th (China)
Best qualifying 2005: 4th (Japan)
Worst qualifying 2005: 16th (Canada, France and Belgium)
Average grid position: 11
2005: Out-qualified David Coulthard 8 times
2005: Completed: 641 out of 842 laps (76.13%)
2005: Finished 11 times from 14 starts (79%)
 
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Red Bull Racing Test/Reserve Driver - Robert Doornbos



Date of birth: 23/09/1981
Place of birth: Rotterdam, Holland
Lives: Viareggio, Italy
Marital status: Single
Height: 1.82m
Weight: 74kg

Driven for:
Jordan (Test Driver) (2004-2005)
Minardi (2005)
Red Bull Racing (Test Driver) (2006)

Website: http://www.robertdoornbos.com/


Biography
1999 Opel Lotus UK Winter Series: Team JR racing, vice-champion (4 poles, 4 wins, 4 fastest laps)
2000 Formula Ford Zetec Benelux: Speedlover, 5th place Benelux Championship, 2nd place Belgian Championship (6 podiums, 1 pole, 3 fastest laps)
2001 F3 Germany: JB Motorsport, 6 races
2001 British Scholarschip Formula 3: FGR Racing, 5th place in championship (2 wins, 2 pole positions and 9 podiums) 2nd place GP F3 support race at Silverstone
2002 F3 Germany: Team Ghinzani, 11th, 17 points (2 podiums)
2002 F3, Macau Grand Prix: 6th place
2003 F3 Euro: Team Ghinzani, 9th, 40 points (3 podiums)
2003 British F3: Menu F3 Motorsport, 4 races, 17th, 26 points (1 podium, 1 pole position, 1 fastest lap)
2003 F3: pole position SPA Masters, 2nd place Korea Grand Prix
2004 F1: Jordan Ford
2004 F3000: Arden International, 3rd, 44 points (1 win, 4 podiums, 1 fastest lap)
2005 F1: Minardi Cosworth, Jordan Grand Prix, 8 races, 25th, 0 points
2005 F1 Tests: Minardi Cosworth, Jordan Grand Prix
2006 F1 Tests: Red Bull Racing

Born in Rotterdam, Netherlands, Doornbos' first sport was tennis, and was competing at semi-professional national level in the Netherlands. His interest in motorsport grew after he was invited to the 1998 Belgian Grand Prix as a guest of WilliamsF1. He gave up tennis and focused on racing, joining the JR racing team for the 1999 Opel Lotus UK Winter series. He had a successful season, finishing second in the championship after taking 4 pole positions, 4 fastest laps and 4 wins. In 2000 he competed in the Formula Ford Zetec Benelux series, finishing 2nd in the Belgian championship and 5th overall with 1 pole, 3 fastest laps and 6 podiums.

Returning to the UK in 2001, Doornbos contested the Scholarship class of the British Formula 3 championship with FGR Racing. He finished the year 5th in the championship, taking 2 poles, 2 wins and 9 podiums. He drew attention with a 2nd place finish in the F3 support race for the British Grand Prix. Doornbos moved to the German Formula 3 championship with Team Ghinzani. He picked up 4 podiums without a win, also finishing 6th in the prestigious Macau Grand Prix. Continuing with the team in 2003, Doornbos competed in the European Formula 3 Championship, visiting the podium 7 times. He took pole position at Spa-Francorchamps for the F3 Masters event, and finished 2nd in the Korean Grand Prix.

With support from Red Bull, Doornbos joined reigning Formula 3000 champions Arden Motorsport for the 2004 FIA International F3000 Championship. Partnered with Vitantonio Liuzzi, Doornbos claimed Rookie of the Year after finishing 3rd in the championship. During the year, he took 1 fastest lap and 4 podium finishes, including a race win at Spa-Francorchamps. Prior to the 2004 Chinese Grand Prix, it was announced that Doornbos would be the official Friday test driver for the Jordan F1 team, replacing Timo Glock, who had been promoted to race duties in place of Giorgio Pantano, whose sponsorship money had "dried up". Doornbos impressed as test driver for the final few races of the season, and was reappointed with the newly-sold Jordan team for the 2005 season.

Doornbos at the 2005 United States Grand Prix

Doornbos completed Friday testing duties for Jordan for all but two of the first 11 races of the year, with French Renault F1 test driver Franck Montagny testing at the European Grand Prix, and Jordan being banned from using a third car at the Canadian Grand Prix after using too many tyres at the previous race. On July 19, Doornbos was appointed as a race driver for Minardi for the 2005 German Grand Prix and onwards, replacing Austrian Patrick Friesacher, who had encountered sponsorship issues. Doornbos and teammate Christijan Albers became the first all-Dutch team line-up since Carel Godin de Beaufort and Ben Pon drove together for the Ecurie Maarsbergen team at the 1962 Dutch Grand Prix at Zandvoort.

The Minardi team ceased to exist in its previous form at the end of 2005, being bought out by Red Bull and becoming their Scuderia Toro Rosso team. Doornbos was unable to find a race drive for 2006, however Christian Horner, his boss in F3000 and Red Bull team boss, signed him to be the team's test and reserve driver. For 2006 he will test at the racetracks on Fridays, and will step into a race drive if either David Coulthard or Christian Klien are unable to race.
 
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Team HQ
Based in: Hinwil, Switzerland and Munich, Germany
Founded: 2005 (active since 2006)

BMW Sauber F1
Wildbachstrasse 9
CH-8340
Hinwil
Switzerland

Tel: (41) 1 937 9000
Fax: (41) 1 937 9001

BMW Motorsport
D-80788
MÜNCHEN

http://www.bmw-sauber-f1.com/

Team Structure
BMW Motorsport Director: Prof. Dr. Mario Theissen
Technical Director Chassis (Hinwil): Willy Rampf
Technical Director Powertrain (Munich): Heinz Paschen
Project Manager: Walter Riedl

Head of Aerodynamics: Seamus Mullarkey
Head of Sponsoring and Business Relations: Guido Stalmann
Head of BMW Motorsport Communication: Jörg Kottmeier

Team Manager: Beat Zehnder
Chief Race Engineer: Mike Krack
Chief Mechanic Race Team: Urs Kuratle


Team Biography
Formerly a successful sportscar entrant and constructor, Sauber built a strong relationship with Mercedes prior to graduating to Formula One in 1993. Despite some disappointing seasons, the team eventually cemented a position just outside the 'big four' and, following the 2005 acquisition by BMW, is now pushing for greater success.

The Sauber sportscar team was responsible for launching the grand prix careers of Michael Schumacher, Heinz-Harald Frentzen and Karl Wendlinger, amongst others, as it operated the famed Mercedes Junior team of the early 1990s.

Austrian Wendlinger moved into F1 with the team in 1993 and was joined by Finn JJ Lehto for the team's debut year, which yielded several good grid positions and fifth place in its first appearance. The team claimed sixth overall in the Constructors' championship and, with Lehto moving to Benetton, signed former protege Frentzen for year two.

The team suffered its first major setback at Monaco in 1994, when Wendlinger crashed heavily in practice. The Austrian was to remain in a coma for several weeks. Despite overtures from Williams for him to replace Ayrton Senna, team-mate Frentzen stayed loyal to Sauber, but another blow was to follow. Funding from a new financial magazine never materialised and the team came close to folding.

Somehow Sauber survived and, although it lost its Mercedes engine supply to McLaren, continued to produce respectable results with works Ford engines. The Ford deal went as quickly as it had come, however, when the fledgling Stewart team announced that it had signed an exclusive five-year deal with the American giant. Fearing that its performance may be compromised, Sauber instigated an on-off agreement with Ferrari, which eventually saw the previous season's specification engines arriving in Switzerland.

With the Ferrari powerplants badged in deference to Malaysian title sponsor Petronas, Sauber secured the services of two-times GP winner Johnny Herbert to partner Frentzen. Despite flashes of potential, the team again finished in seventh position in the Constructors' championship, with Herbert's podium finish in Monaco the high point of the year.

Herbert stayed at Hinwil for 1997 but, when Frentzen departed for Williams, the English driver was joined by a series of partners. A lack of development failed to capitalise on seventh place on the grid in Australia. Another solitary podium finish - this time in Hungary - was not enough to lift Sauber above seventh place overall.

For 1998, Herbert was joined by former Tyrrell, Ferrari and Benetton driver Jean Alesi, as Sauber fielded the most experienced line-up of the season. The Petronas-Ferrari engines showed greater potential, but the team failed to put together a series of good results and, with tensions rising between the drivers, was forced to rely on a solitary third place at Spa as its high point of the year.

The rift with Alesi saw Herbert move on at the end of the season and, for 1999, the fiery Frenchman was joined by Pedro Diniz. Unlike many of his predecessors, team boss Peter Sauber said he signed the Brazilian for his talent rather than his wallet, and Diniz prospered despite an unreliable car. Alesi, however, fell out with the manager who favoured him twelve months earlier and announced he was quitting as early as the Hungarian GP.

Replacing the Frenchman wasn't easy, but Sauber eventually plumped for Ferrari stand-in Mika Salo. The Finn brought knowledge of the F399 to complement the team's supply of former Scuderia engines, and both he and Diniz showed well in testing.

Dull as ditchwater was one journalists take on Sauber's 2000 season in which the obligitary six points were scored in a number of fighting drives, all by Salo. The Finn easily outpaced the increasingly erratic Diniz, who hung up his helmet at season's end to move into management.

Salo too, moved on, the lure of a Toyota berth in 2002 proving more than enough persuasion for one of F1's nicest men. Left with two seats to fill, Peter Sauber took a gamble, and hired the youngest line-up in F1. If Nick Heidfeld was a surprise choice after a dismal debut season with Prost, however, the arrival of Kimi Raikkonen was greeted with a mixture of delight and scepticism.

The Finn had romped to the British Formula Renault crown in 2000, and then impressed in testing. With other teams casting envious glances in his direction, Sauber acted quickly to snap him up - and angered his main sponsor in the process!

Red Bull's Dieter Mateschitz had hoped to place protege Enrique Bernoldi in the second seat, and took some of his funding to Arrows when the Leafield team offered the Brazilian a drive, but, even with Raikkonen having only 23 races under his belt and four more to prove himself in F1, Sauber wasn't overly concerned.

What was more worrying was the departure of designer Sergio Rinland on the eve of the team's launch, but even this did not stop the team from being bullish after testing.

Two cars in the points in Melbourne was followed by a podium for Heidfeld in Brazil, before a string of regular scoring finishes propelled the team into the top four. Both drivers ended the year in the top ten of the individual championship, proving Sauber's hunch was correct.

Sadly for the Swiss team boss, the duo's performance in 2001 naturally led to one of them being snapped up by McLaren - and it wasn't Mercedes protege Heidfeld!

With Raikkonen gone - in exchange for some nice new German tractor units - Sauber promptly revisited virgin territory and signed Euro F3000 champion Felipe Massa. The 20-year old had also romped to his title, but had less of a reputation than Raikkonen.

With Heidfeld determined to prove that McLaren got the wrong man, and Sauber out to build on the success of 2001's C20 with the C21, the 2002 campaign held much promise for a team, which, incidentally, also earned an extension of its Red Bull deal.

2002 was by no means a bad year for the Swiss team, however compared to 2001, it was always likely to be disappointing by comparison. In the end the team scored eleven points, seven from Heidfeld and four from Massa, and clinched fifth in the Constructors'. No podium positions came their way though, and the team's best result was a fourth place finish at the Spanish GP in April.

By the end of the year team boss, Peter Sauber had lost patience with Massa, who despite being fast, was erratic and rather accident-prone. The Brazilian saw out the season though, only missing the US GP, after he became the first driver to receive a ten-place grid penalty for an offence in the previous GP. Returnee Frentzen thus raced at Indianapolis, after leaving Arrows and it was Heinz-Harald who replaced him in 2003, lining up alongside his fellow countryman, Heidfeld, who stayed with Sauber for a third successive year.

The start of the 2003 campaign was ok, with both drivers notching up points finishes in the opening three races, two for Heinz-Harald, and one for Heidfeld, after that though the team went into a big lull, punctuated only by a eighth place finish at the European GP, before a double finish at a rain affected US GP saved the day, when Frentzen came home third to take the teams only podium of the season, and Heidfeld fifth.

Overall the team finished the year sixth in the Constructors', which wasn't half bad considering the squad beat works efforts, Jaguar and Toyota and was only 7 points behind BAR-Honda in fifth.

The following season saw a complete change in the driver line-up, out went Heidfeld and Frentzen, and in came Giancarlo Fisichella, and returnee, Felipe Massa, who after a year testing for Ferrari, was somewhat more polished.

In 2004, Peter Sauber's team again utilised the Ferrari engine, however they also opted to use the same gearbox, further confirmation that the relationship was solid. Added to this, the team's new state-of-the-art £50 million full-scale wind tunnel paid dividends as the season wore on.

In total, Sauber scored points more often than not - on 12 out of 16 attempts - to finish the year easily sixth in the constructors' on 34 points, behind only Ferrari, BAR, Renault, Williams and McLaren. Their best finish came at the Belgian GP, when Fisichella and Massa combined to finish fourth and fifth.

In 2005, Massa remained at the team, but Fisichella left to return to Renault, with Sauber picking up Jacques Villeneuve - who had inked his deal before the end of his 2004 sabbatical - on a two-year deal.

Despite his lack of form in two races as Jarno Trulli's replacement at Renault in 2004, and a slow start to his relationship with Sauber, the 1997 world champion weathered the storm to end the season at least on a par with his younger team-mate, although Massa had the upper hand in both championship position and points scored - the pair finishing 13th and 14th overall with eleven and nine points respectively.

Making the most of the team's switch to Michelin tyres, Villeneuve scored Sauber's best result of 2005, with fourth in San Marino, but still had to battle to keep his seat in 2006, after Massa had been snapped up by Ferrari.

At the root of Villeneuve's problems was the arrival of BMW, which decided to launch its own assault on F1 following its split with Williams. Quickly entering a deal to acquire the entire Sauber operation, the German giant spent the second half of 2005 gearing up for its first season as an entrant, bringing former Williams driver Nick Heidfeld in as its first signing.

Although he maintained his two-year deal stood, Villeneuve had to wait until the very end of the year to be confirmed alongside Heidfeld, who was effectively returning to the team that rescued his F1 career at the turn of the century.

BMW's first bespoke chassis, the BMW Sauber F1.06, appears to be a sensible piece of kit, designed for a season team principal Mario Theissen insists will be used to gain experience rather than chase immediate success.

Whether the mandatory V8 engine can surpass the limited achievements of BMW's V10 remains to be seen, especially as the return to tyre changes in races will see Michelin's advantage over Bridgestone reduced in 2006.


Statistics - Prior to 2006 Season (As Sauber)
Drivers' Titles: 0
Constructors' Titles: 0
Seasons in F1: 13
Grand Prix: 215
Wins: 0
Points: 195
Poles: 0
Fastest Laps: 0

Best result in 2005: 4th - Villeneuve (San
Best qualifying 2005: 4th - Villeneuve (Aus)
Worst qualifying 2005: 20th - Massa (Aus)
2005 Average grid position: Massa (11.63) Villeneuve (12.36)
2005: Massa out-qualified Villeneuve 13 times
2005: Villeneuve out-qualified Massa: 6
2005: Completed: 2052 out of 2214 laps (92.68%)
2005: Finished 31 times from 36 starts (86.11%)


F1.06.jpg



F1.06 Technical Specifications

Chassis: Carbon-fibre monocoque
Suspension: Upper and lower wishbones (front and rear), inboard springs and dampers, actuated by pushrods (Sachs Race Engineering)
Brakes: Six-piston callipers (Brembo), carbon pads and discs (Brembo, Carbone Industrie)
Transmission: Longitudinally mounted 7-speed transmission, carbon-fibre clutch (AP)
Chassis electronics: Magneti Marelli
Steering wheel: BMW Sauber F1 Team
Tyres: Michelin
Wheels: OZ

Dimensions
Dimensions: length 4,610 mm
Width: 1,800 mm
Height: 1,000 mm
Track width, front: 1,470 mm
Track width, rear: 1,410 mm
Wheelbase: 3,110 mm
Weight: 600 kg (incl. driver, ready to drive, tank empty)

BMW P86
Type: Normally aspirated V8
Bank angle: 90 degrees
Displacement: 2,400 cc
Valves: four per cylinder
Valve train: pneumatic
Engine block: aluminium
Cylinder head: aluminium
Crankshaft: steel
Oil system: dry sump lubrication
Engine management: BMW
Weight: 95 kg
 
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No 16 - Nick Heidfeld


Date of birth: 10/05/1977
Place of birth: Monchengladbach, Germany
Lives: Near Lake Zurich, Switzerland
Marital status: Single
Height: 1.64m
Weight: 59kg

Driven for:
Prost (2000)
Sauber (2001-2003)
Jordan (2004)
Williams (2005)
BMW Sauber (2006)

Website: http://www.adrivo.com/nickheidfeld/

Biography
1995 Runner-up in the German Formula Ford Championship.
1997 German Formula 3 Champion.
1999 FIA International Formula 3000 Champion with West team, also McLaren test driver.
2000 Makes his debut with the Prost team. No points scored.
2001 Now with Sauber, scores 12 points and ends up eighth in the Drivers' Championship.
2002 A fourth, a fifth and two sixth places in his second season with Sauber. He finishes tenth in the Drivers' Championship.
2003 Qualifies in the top ten three times and scores six points. Dropped by Sauber for 2004.
2004 Tough season with Jordan brings just three points. However, goes on to win Williams drive for 2005.
2005 Upstages highly-rated Williams team mate Mark Webber by taking pole at the Nurburgring and beating the Australian to second place in Monaco. Ahead of Webber in standings after 14 rounds, but misses last five races through illness and injury. Quits team to join BMW's new works squad for 2006.

Little was heard of Nick Heidfeld outside of his German homeland until he started to turn heads in the national F3 series.

Sharing a birthplace with fellow Monchengladbach boy Heinz-Harald Frentzen, the young Heidfeld began, like so many others, in karting. He made his debut, aged nine, in 1986, and used his formative years to build the experience necessary to win titles. Although these were slow to come in karting, Heidfeld held enough promise to be selected for both the World and European championships in 1991, and finished fifth in the German series a year later.

Another World Karting Championship entry in 1993 preceded the jump to cars, as Nick made his debut in the 1994 German FFord series. Eight wins in nine starts gained the attention of the German media as he won the 1600cc class, and set the youngster up for the move to higher things. The following year saw him finish as runner-up in the overall standings, with a maiden championship title in the concurrent German Zetec series.

1996 saw a move to the German F3 championship, and Heidfeld made an immediate impact by claiming third overall behind future F1 rival Jarno Trulli and sometime CART driver Arnd Meier. The following year, Nick made sure that the title was his, although a mid-season hiccup kept the public in suspense for longer than it anticipated.

F3000 was the logical progression for 1998, and Heidfeld stunned again by remaining in the running for the title right to the end. His rival on this occasion was Juan Montoya, and the pair shared seven wins from the 12 races contested.

While Montoya went off to America in search of CART glory, Heidfeld followed the tried and tested path of a second year in each formula. This time, he had little opposition as he romped to the F3000 title, seizing the trophy well before the end of the year, and almost certainly securing himself a place in the top flight.

Given his involvement with the McLaren-backed West Competition squad, and his F1 testing duties, many expected Heidfeld to be squeezed into the Woking operation's grand prix team. This didn't materialise, but such was the impact he created on the F1 paddock, that he was not short of offers, with Prost his eventual destination.

Nick lined up alongside veteran Jean Alesi at Alain Prost's team, but poor testing results were only the start of a long, hard season for the German. Unlike some of his rookie rivals, however, the pressure was not as heavy on the German and, despite not scoring a point and generally being overshadowed by Alesi, he was able to slip easily into alternative employment with Sauber for 2001.

Testing times with both the older C19 and new C20 promised much for Heidfeld, and the German was on the pace from the very first race. Surprisingly, the Swiss team did not fade away mid-season, and both Heidfeld and rookie team-mate Kimi Raikkonen were able to ruffle the feathers of the established midfield giants.

Between them, the youngest duo on the grid racked up 21 points, good enough for fourth in the constructors' series, while Heidfeld got marginally the better of Raikkonen in the drivers' standings, taking eighth overall with twelve points, including a podium finish in Brazil.

It was with some amazement, therefore, that Raikkonen was the man summoned by McLaren to replace the retiring Mika Hakkinen - despite Heidfeld's links with the team during his junior career.

The oversight - as Heidfeld likes to refer to the decision - meant he had much to prove during 2002. The Sauber C21 though didn't have the same impact as the C20, and despite some good performances the Swiss team couldn't match their fantastic fourth place in the constructors' championship. Fifth overall though was a good effort, the outfit scoring 11 points in total, 7 courtesy of Nick.

Heidfeld's best result came at the Spanish GP in April, when he finished fourth behind Michael Schumacher, Juan Montoya and David Coulthard. The German also consistently beat his new team-mate, Felipe Massa, out-racing him 10-4, and out-qualifying him 12-5.

Nick's third successive season with Sauber [2003] was on the whole a largely disappointing campaign. The main highlight was a fifth place at the United States GP, that along with an eighth place finish at the European GP, was as good as it got, and marked the German's only points scoring positions. He ended the season with 6 points in total, joint 14th in the drivers' championship.

The following year - 2004 - brought a change of scene for the German and having been dropped by Sauber he joined Jordan - a deal eventually confirmed at the end of January. Jordan though had another difficult season, and while Heidfeld persevered - much to his credit, as the EJ14, wasn't up to much, it was for little reward.

His efforts though were noted by most down the pit-lane, however, and, despite his best results coming in the early part of the season, with seventh at Monaco and eighth in Canada, the Heidfeld reputation was largely restored.

Denied the chance to move to Williams as replacement for the injured Ralf Schumacher mid-season, and left to take 16th overall with three points in 2004, Heidfeld finally got his chance to move to Grove after a shoot-out with test driver Antonio Pizzonia left him to partner Mark Webber for the 2005 season.

Unfortunately for Heidfeld, it was to be a difficult season for the Williams team, with a public divorce from engine suppliers BMW and a lack of pace compared to the front runners on the grid. Despite that, the German driver managed to bring his car home on the podium on three occasions, taking third in Malaysia before back-to-back second place finishes in Monaco and at the Nurburgring – where he also took a surprise pole position. However points would only be scored on two other occasions and Heidfeld saw his time with the team come to an early end when he picked up an injury which forced him to miss the final four races of the year.

With uncertainty over his future thanks to the 'Buttongate' saga, Heidfeld elected to move to the new BMW team for 2006 before the announcement that Button wouldn't be joining Williams, so the German will hope to prove that his decision to move wasn't a hasty one as he partners Jacques Villeneuve for the new season.

Still highly regarded throughout the paddock, Heidfeld will be looking to score points on a regular basis and will hope to improve on his eleventh place in the standings come the end of the season in Brazil.

Statistics - Prior to 2006 Season
Drivers' Titles: 0
Seasons in F1: 6
Grand Prix: 97
Wins: 0
Points: 56
Poles: 1
Fastest Laps: 0

Best result in 2005: 2nd (Monaco & Europe)
Best qualifying 2005: Pole (Europe)
Worst qualifying 2005: 18th (Spain)
Average grid position: 9.7
2005: Out-qualified Mark Webber 5 times
2005: Completed: 720 out of 830 laps (86.75%)
2005: Finished 9 times from 13 starts (69%)


No 17 - Jacques Villeneuve


Date of birth: 09/04/1971
Place of birth: St. Jean-Sur-Richelieu, Quebec, Canada
Lives: Monte Carlo
Marital status: Engaged to Elly
Height: 1.68m
Weight: 67kg

Driven for:
Williams (1996-1998
BAR (1999-2003)
Renault (2004)
Sauber (2005)
BMW Sauber (2006)

Website: http://jv.flagworld.com/

Biography
1989 Makes his debut in Italian Formula Three.
1992 Moves to Japan and competes in Japanese Formula Three, finishing the championship in second place.
1994 Enters IndyCar, named 'Rookie Of The Year.' Finishes 6th overall with 94 points.
1995 After winning 4 races, including the Indianapolis 500, he becomes the youngest ever IndyCar World Champion. Signed by Williams to partner Damon Hill in 1996.
1996 Finishes 2nd in Australia in his debut Grand Prix with Williams. Runner-up behind Damon Hill in the Drivers' Championship.
1997 Takes 7 victories to win the Drivers' Championship and give WIlliams the Constructors' Championship.
1998 Stays with Williams. Finishes the championship 5th, with 2 podiums.
1999 First year with British American Racing. He scores no points.
2000 Villeneuve finishes 7th in the championship with 17 points.
2001 Two third places, in Spain and Germany, give BAR its first podium finishes. They also help Villeneuve to another 7th place in the Drivers' Championship, this time with 12 points.
2002 Villeneuve takes only four points, and finishes 12th in the Drivers' Championship.
2003 Generally out-performed by team mate Jenson Button. Scores just six points and leaves the team after the penultimate round in the United States.
2004 Makes an unexpected comeback with Renault for final three rounds following Jarno Trulli's departure. Signs to Sauber for full-time return in 2005.
2005 Makes fulltime return to the sport with Sauber. Struggles to match team mate Felipe Massa in first half of season but closes gap in the second, finishing year just two points behind the Brazilian. Retained by new team owners BMW for 2006.

Jacques Villeneuve came to Formula One with an impressive reputation, and a lot to live up to. His father Gilles was a star of the late '70s and early '80s, famed for his displays of all-or-nothing driving in often awful Ferraris. Jacques has generally got on with business quietly - and certainly less flamboyantly - than his father, but continues to be a firm favourite with the crowds.

Differing from the normal F1 driver in having no karting career, Jacques was a promising all-round sportsman at boarding school in Switzerland. Indeed, he could have made the Canadian downhill ski team had he not decided to pursue a career behind the wheel.

A high profile entry into the Italian Formula Three series produced little in the way of notable results and it was only three years later, when he moved to the Japanese F3 championship, that he began to convince insiders that he had the talent to progress further. Three wins in Japan sealed the runner-up spot in the 1992 championship, and saw Jacques return to North America to contest the Toyota-Atlantic series.

Another top three championship finish was achieved on the back of three wins, and led to a full-time Indycar season with the Forsythe-Green team. After climbing through the field as the season progressed, Jacques finally took his maiden Indycar win at Road America, and was deservedly awarded the 'Rookie of the Year' prize.

A second year with the renamed Team Green produced even greater results, with Jacques following success in the Indy 500 with the overall Indycar championship title. Four race wins in all brought him firmly into the running for a grand prix seat, and Williams duly signed him for the 1996 season.

Villeneuve stunned the F1 paddock by taking pole position on his debut in Australia and almost winning the race. Only a late problem prevented a remarkable double, but the Canadian went on to record four wins in his first season, and push team-mate Damon Hill close for the championship. The title was only decided at the final round, where a lost wheel caused an accident for Villeneuve and confined him to second overall.

The Formula One title was added to his Indycar crown in 1997 when he triumphed over season-long rival Michael Schumacher. Seven wins brought Villeneuve to the final round needing to beat the German to secure the crown, and the race came down to a battle between the two. The title was finally decided when Schumacher collided with the Williams in an attempt to prevent it passing his Ferrari. While the German retired, Villeneuve limped to the finish and the drivers' title.

Villeneuve remained at Williams for a third season in 1998, but his car proved to be no match for either the McLarens or Ferraris. He was continually linked to the nascent British American Racing team created by former manager Craig Pollock for 1999, but only moved after hauling the difficult Williams to several unexpected positions - including podiums in Germany and Hungary - towards the end of 1998.

The 1999 season promised to be an interesting one for the Canadian, as British American Racing geared up for its first taste of F1. Although testing had shown that the team's first car had potential, pre-season predictions of success left egg on many people's faces as it failed to score a single point all year.

Despite rumours that he was set to return to Williams, Villeneuve honoured his BAR contract in 2000. He said, however, that if the new Honda V10 did not turn around the team's fortunes, he would be off at the end of the season. Testing showed the car to be off the pace, but a whole lot more reliable than its predecessor, and some strong-arm drives allowed both Villeneuve and team-mate Zonta to rack up points on a regular basis during the year, beginning in Melbourne. There were no podiums, although Villeneuve racked up four fourth place finishes, but things were definitely brighter in the BAR camp.

A mid-season slump brought rumours of a move elsewhere to the fore - with Benetton the new favourite to pick up the Canadian's tab - but Villeneuve again decided to stay loyal to BAR and former manager Craig Pollock for 2001. Zonta left, however, replaced by experienced Frenchman Olivier Panis, fresh from a successful testing stint with McLaren.

The hard-headed Panis potentially had what it took to push Villeneuve to the limits in 2001, but it was still the Canadian who came out on top, taking the team's first podium finish in Spain and adding to it at Hockenheim.

The 003 was another disappointing car, however, and Villeneuve was once again linked to moves away from BAR. This time, though, the Canadian made up his mind quickly, and inked another extension to his contract.

All seemed well until mentor and team boss Craig Pollock announced his resignation on the eve of the official 2002 launch, leaving Prodrive boss David Richards to take charge.

JV though stayed on, despite being visibly upset by the news. The BAR-Honda 004 was however again well off the pace and the Brackley based team didn't score a point until mid-season, at the British GP in July. There, Villeneuve came home fourth, with team-mate Panis fifth. It was one of only two promising races for the Canadian, the other the USA GP, where Jacques qualified seventh and came home sixth. Other than that a couple of seventh places was as good as it got. All in all, JV retired on eight occasions and only qualified in the top ten six times.

Throughout the year there were persist rumours the Canadian might be forced out, and new team boss Richards made it clear he thought Jacques was getting paid too much to the detriment of the team. Villeneuve though hung on, and with a contract continued at the outfit in 2003.

His final season with BAR though was far from a vintage year, and in the end most reckoned he had been outperformed by new team-mate Jenson Button. At the end of the season, BAR announced that they wouldn't be retaining him, and as a result, JV left one race early, making way for Honda favourite, Takuma Sato.

2004 was spent mostly on the sidelines, looking to secure a comeback for 2005.

That opportunity came early though, when Renault fell out with Jarno Trulli, meaning Jacques could make his comeback three races early. His time with Renault was pretty uninspiring though, and yielding one eleventh place finish and two tenths.

Despite this though, Sauber had already committed to the Canadian, signing him on a two-year deal for 2005/6. Judging by his form with Renault - or lack of it - many questioned Peter Sauber's decision to go for the former champion over a younger less experienced driver and the initial suggestion once the season got underway was that the team may have got it wrong as the Canadian driver struggled in the opening three races of the year.

A fourth place finish at San Marino was the undoubted highlight of the first half of the season although points would only follow on two more occasions – in France and Belgium. Towards the end of the season, there were flashes of the old Villeneuve and having done enough to secure his seat with BMW for next season – when rumours had suggested he could have had his contract paid off in favour of a younger driver – Villeneuve will be keen to show he is still capable of doing a job in F1.

With a new crop of young drivers coming through the ranks, it's fair to say that 2006 could well be Villeneuve's final chance – and it is imperative that he takes it if he wants to be in the running for a drive for 2007 and beyond.

Statistics - Prior to 2006 Season
Drivers' Titles: 1
Seasons in F1: 10
Grand Prix: 152
Wins: 11
Points: 228
Poles: 13
Fastest Laps: 9

Best result in 2005: 4th (San Marino)
Best qualifying 2005: 4th (Australia)
Worst qualifying 2005: 18th (Turkey)
Average grid position: 12.3
2005: Out-qualified Felipe Massa 6 times
2005: Completed: 1033 out of 1107 laps (93.32%)
2005: Finished 15 times from 18 starts (83%)
 
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BMW Sauber Test/Reserve Driver - Robert Kubica



Date of birth: 07/12/1984
Place of birth: Krakow, Poland
Lives: Krakow, Poland
Marital status: Single
Height: 1.84m
Weight: 73kg

Driven for:
BMW Sauber(Test Driver) (2006)

Website: http://www.kubica.pl/


Biography
1999 Karting
2000 Karting
2001 F.Renault 2000 Italy: RC Motorsport, 13th, 27 points (1 podium, 1 fastest lap)
2001 F.Renault Eurocup
2002 F.Renault 2000 Italy: RC Motorsport, 2nd, 188 points (4 wins, 6 podiums, 3 pole positions, 5 fastest laps)
2003 F3 Euro: Prema Powerteam, 12th, 31 points (1 win, 2 podiums, 3 fastest laps)
2003 British F3: Prema Powerteam, 2 races
2004 F3 Euro: ASL-Mücke Motorsport, 7th, 53 points (3 podiums)
2005 WS Renault: Epsilon Euskadi, Champion, 154 points (4 wins, 11 podiums, 3 pole positions, 1 fastest lap)
2006 F1 Tests: Mild Seven Renault F1 Team, BMW Sauber F1 Team

On December 1, 2005, Robert Kubica became the first Pole to drive a Formula One car in anger, having been given a test by the Renault, part of his reward for winning the 2005 World Series by Renault.

Less than three weeks later, days after his twenty-first birthday, he was confirmed as third driver for the BMW Sauber F1 Team in 2006, supporting regulars, Nick Heidfeld and Jacques Villeneuve.

Inevitably, Robert's racing career began in karts, aged six, and by the age of ten he was Polish champion.

In 1998 he became the first non-Italian to win the prestigious Italian Junior Kart Championship, in addition to finishing second in the European Kart Championship.

In 2001 and 2002 he competed in the Italian Formula Renault series and the Formula Renault 2000 Eurocup, finishing runner up in the Italian series in 2002.

2003 marked his debut in the Formula 3 Euro Series, famously winning his maiden race (Norisring). He also contested two rounds of the British F3 series.

In 2005 he represented the Spanish team, Epsilon Euskadi, in the 3.5 litre V6 World Series by Renault. With four wins, and a total of 154 points, Robert romped away with the title ahead of Adrian Valles and Markus Winkelhock.

Announcing Robert's signing as BMW's third driver, Mario Theissen said: "We have been following Robert's progress and are very impressed by his performance in recent years. He has worked hard to achieve his success without major support. We are convinced that he has the potential and the will to make the leap into Formula One and are delighted to be able to give him the opportunity to do so."
 
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Team HQ
Based in: Silverstone, Northamptonshire, United Kingdom
Founded: 2005 (active since 2006)

Midland F1 Racing
Dadford Road
Silverstone
Northamptonshire
NN12 8TJ

Tel: 01327 850800
Tax: 01327 857993

Website: http://www.midlandf1.com/

Team Structure
Team Owner: Alex Shnaider

Team Principal and Managing Director: Dr Colin Kolles
Sporting Director: Adrian Burgess
Sporting Relations Manager: Johnny Herbert
Technical Director: James Key

Chief Designer: John McQuilliam
Head of Aerodynamics: Simon Phillips
Head of Electronics: Mike Wroe
Production Manager: Simon Shinkins
Manager of Business Affairs: Ian Phillips

Head of Business Development: Dr. Manfredi Ravetto
Sponsorship and Marketing Manager: Christopher Leat
Sponsorship and Marketing Manager: Charlotte Anderson

Team Manager: Andy Stevenson
Chief Race Enginee: Dominic Harlow
Chief Mechanic: Ricky Taylor

Team Biography
Midland MF1 Racing was formed after Alex Shnaider bought the Silverstone based team from Eddie Jordan in 2005.

Jordan Grand Prix itself though was formed in the early 1990's and the team made an immediate impact on the Formula One scene, wheeling out the very attractive, Gary Anderson designed, 7-Up sponsored 191 chassis in 1991. The car was to have been designated 911, but Porsche objected!

With the experienced - if accident prone - Andrea de Cesaris behind the wheel, Jordan gradually made its way towards the front of the grid. Having escaped from the pre-qualifying sessions, which used to precede the regular GP weekend, Jordan began to feature as regular point scorers. de Cesaris took fourth at the Canadian GP to open the team's account, and almost led the Belgian race before retiring.

The other seat proved even more eventful, however, with original driver Bertrand Gachot jailed for assaulting a London taxi driver and replacement Michael Schumacher being poached by Benetton after just one race. Roberto Moreno and rookie Alex Zanardi saw out the season.

The second season was almost Jordan's undoing, however. Works Yamaha engines proved woefully unreliable, and the team came close to going under despite attracting support from South African power company Sasol.

The combination of under-rated Hart engines and the exciting talent of Rubens Barrichello brought the team back to the forefront in 1993, with the Brazilian coming close to a podium finish at Donington Park's European GP. Had the second seat been more settled - and not featured a total of five faces during the season, the team could have managed better than 10th place overall.

Having signed Eddie Irvine for a controversial debut in Japan, Jordan continued with the partnership with Barrichello for another two seasons, returning to the top six in the Constructors' series. Although Irvine began the season by incurring a three race ban following an accident in Brazil, the pair took the team's first podium finishes in Canada before Barrichello scored Jordan's first pole position at Spa-Francorchamps in 1995.

The team maintained a top five presence in the Constructors' standings despite some varied results between 1995 and 1997. With Irvine leaving for Ferrari in 1996, and Barrichello departing for Stewart the following year, Jordan could have suffered greatly, but the impressive combination of then rookies Giancarlo Fisichella and Ralf Schumacher, and works Peugeot engines, kept the team in the hunt for victories in 1997.

It was all change for 1998, however, with Damon Hill replacing Benetton-bound Fisichella and Mugen taking over from Peugeot. The 198 chassis proved difficult to set up in the early part of the year, and Jordan found itself scrapping with Minardi for eighth and ninth places in Monaco, before executing a dramatic about-turn after the half-way point in France.

Schumacher started the ball rolling with sixth place - and the team's first point of the season - at Silverstone and, from then on, the heavily revised Jordan's scored in almost every race. The highest point, however, came at the sodden and carnage-strewn Belgian GP, where Hill led his team-mate home for the team's first win. The party that night was riotous - even by Jordan's standards!

For 1999, an Anglo-German partnership continued to pedal the new 199 chassis, but Heinz-Harald Frentzen swapped seats with Schumacher and moved over from Williams. Gone, too, was long-time designer Gary Anderson, replaced by ex-Tyrrell man Mike Gascoyne. The new car was a revision of the latterly successful 198, and continued to utilise the reliable - and increasingly powerful - Mugen V10 engine. This was put to good effect as Frentzen recovered from his Grove nightmare to notch up wins in France and Italy, and almost put together a title challenge. Hill, however, disappointed pondering over his decision to retire before eventually sliding out of the sport after parking his 199 on three occasions.

The Englishman was replaced by Italian star Jarno Trulli for 2000, while Jordan fielded the radical-looking EJ10. So named to commemorate the team's tenth season in the top flight, the car impressed with its speed in testing and it was hoped that it would allow them to again challenge the sport's big two.

Jordon were though perhaps the biggest disappointment of the 2000 season with Frentzen and Trulli mustering only 17 points between them amidst a long list of mechanical failures that thwarted the team during the year. The gearbox was the first sticking point and the team suffered no less than 11 mechanical failures during the year, dropping behind Williams, BAR and Benetton in the constructors chase.

For 2001 the team retained its driver line-up, and added Ricardo Zonta to the staff as the official test driver.

The year proved to be largely disappointing, however, with neither Frentzen nor Trulli really delivering the goods. The Italian showed flashes of potential in qualifying but again apparently lacked the same sort of commitment in races, while Frentzen was just plain lacklustre.

Matters came to a head before the German GP, when Frentzen was sacked after a row with team boss Eddie Jordan, and replaced temporarily by Zonta.

The Brazilian's chances of landing the seat full-time were hampered by an embarrassing Hockenheim outing for the whole team - in front of vociferous Frentzen fans as well - and, when the chance came to bring back former Jordan F3000 favourite Jean Alesi, Eddie wasted no time in installing the Frenchman alongside Trulli.

The team's fortunes took a brief rise, as Alesi held of Ralf Schumacher to claim sixth in Belgium, but, despite a fourth for Trulli in the USA - ironically pushing Alesi out of the top six after he was reinstated on appeal after disqualification - the season rather fizzled out. Only Alesi's last race ending in the wall with Kimi Raikkonen left its mark.

The Frenchman, hoped to retain his seat for 2002, as Trulli was Renault-bound, however the team eventually opted for Giancarlo Fisichella and Takuma Sato, leaving Alesi only one option - retirement.

The year though was pretty dismal, and on the whole it was a struggle. It took the outfit until the Austrian GP to score points and then things improved, although only marginally. Three consecutive fifth place finishes, at the A1 Ring, Monaco and Canada was as good as it got, and although they would get two more points finishes - a sixth in Hungary and a fifth in Japan - the EJ12 proved to be a difficult car, so much so that designer Eghbal Hamidy left the team even before the first GP and Henri Durand eventually took over, working alongside Gary Anderson, who returned in the October, prior to the 2002 season.

2001 British F3 Champion Sato also failed to impress, his early season form was far from great and although he improved, and finished the year on a high at Suzuka, he failed to really match his team-mate, Fisichella.

The team ended the season though sixth in the constructors', with nine points, beating the likes of Jaguar, Toyota and fellow Honda powered runners, BAR. It wasn't enough though to convince Honda, and the team switched to Ford-Cosworth engines for 2003.

On the driver front Fisichella stayed for the following season, the Italian partnered by reigning Formula Nippon champion, Ralph Firman, following the exit of Sato.

Early testing of the new EJ13 was mixed, and in many ways that is how you can sum up the team's year.

Brazil was undoubtedly the high point, when Fisichella took a fortuitous win, in the rain affected race at Interlagos, other than that though a further seventh place finish in America (again Fisichella) and an eighth in Spain (this time Firman) were the only points scoring efforts.

The team ended the year in the doldrums, ninth in the constructors' on 13 points - ahead of only Minardi. A legal dispute with Vodafone was also a rather embarrassing episode too, one that the outfit lost.

Jordan was the last to confirm their driver line-up for 2004, Nick Heidfeld the first to get the nod, with Giorgio Pantano taking the other seat, after protracted negotiations with Jos Verstappen fell through.

The new EJ14 was off the pace in winter testing following it's low key 'launch' at Silverstone, and early signs were less than good.

If Jordan thought 2003, was bad, then 2004 was even worse. Three points finishes was as good as it got, Nick Heidfeld taking seventh at Monaco, while Timo Glock, who replaced Pantano for Canada [and the final three grand prix], helped the team to their best finish of the season in Montreal, when he combined with Heidfeld to finish seventh and eighth.

Jordan only scored 5 points all year, and unsurprisingly finished ninth in the Constructors'.

For 2005, there were some big changes behind the scenes - with team boss, Eddie Jordan selling the outfit to Alex Shnaider's Midland Group, something finally confirmed at the end of January.

Jordan also switched to Toyota engines following Ford's decision to sell Jaguar Racing and Cosworth - a deal concluded by EJ prior to his sell-out.

The driver line-up meanwhile was confirmed in February, with Tiago Monteiro and Narain Karthikeyan signing on for the 2005 season.

It was the last year in F1 for the Jordan name but in reality, it was already very much a Midland operation, not that it made much difference in terms of on track performance. The uncompetitive EJ14 was modified to comply to the new regulations - and to fit the Toyota engine and after that Monteiro and Karthikeyan had to made do as best they could.

Unsurprisingly the Jordan name didn't go out on a high and the team only scored 12 points, although 11 were picked up at the US GP when only the three Bridgestone shod teams took part. The team ended the season ninth in the constructors' - once again ahead of only Minardi. Furthermore while they introduced a B-spec chassis, it was only seen late in the season, and in all honesty didn't make that much difference.

For 2006 the team will be re-branded Midland MF1 Racing, and while Monteiro did enough to retain his seat - after finishing in every race bar one - Karthikeyan has been replaced by Christijan Albers.

Initial thoughts suggest that they will again be battling with Minardi, now of course, Scuderia Toro Rosso following Red Bull's take-over.


M16.jpg



M16 Technical Specifications

Chassis: Full carbon fibre composite monocoque.
Front suspension: Composite pushrods activating chassis mounted in-line dampers and torsion bars, unequal length composite aerodynamic wishbones, front anti-roll bar and cast uprights.
Rear suspension: Composite pushrods activating gearbox mounted rotary dampers & torsion bars, unequal length composite aerodynamic wishbones, and cast uprights.
Transmission: In-house Midland MF1 Racing design. 7-speed + reverse longitudinal gearbox with electrohydraulic sequential gear change.
Clutch: Triple plate AP racing clutch
Wheels: Forged BBS wheels to MF1 Racing specification
Fuel tank capacity: Over 90 kg

Dimensions
Wheel base: More than 3000mm
Front track: 1480mm
Rear track: 1418mm
Overall height: 950mm
Overall length: Approx. 5000 mm
Overall weight: 601kg (with driver)

Toyota RVX-06
Number of Cylinders: 8
Capacity: 2398cc
Horsepower: More than 700bhp
Revolutions: Approx. 20,000rpm
Valve actuation: Pneumatic
Throttle actuation: Hydraulic
Spark Plugs: DENSO
 
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No 18 - Tiago Monteiro


Date of birth: 24/07/1976
Place of birth: Oporto, Portugal
Lives: Oporto, Portugal
Marital status: Single
Height: 1.74m
Weight: 64kg

Driven for:
Minardi (Test driver) (2004)
Jordan (2005)
Midland (2006)


Website: http://www.tiagoracing.com/

Biography
1998 Rookie of the Year in the French Formula 3 Championship. Finishes 12th overall with two fourth places.
1999 Sixth overall in the French Formula 3 Championship with one win, one second and two third places. Finishes 16th overall and sixth in class at the Le Mans 24 Hours. Wins International Renault Finals in Estoril with pole position and fastest lap.
2000 Second in French Formula 3 Championship with four wins. Second in Formula 3 European Championship. One win at Spa, plus second places in the Korea Super Prix and the Formula 3 Pau Grand Prix.
2001 Runner-up again in French Formula 3 Championship with four wins, four podiums and six poles. Two class wins and four poles in French GT Championship. Two wins in Formula France series.
2002 FIA Interational Formula 3000 series with Super Nova team. Finishes 12th overall. Maiden Formula One test with Renault in Barcelona as part of the team's driver development programme.
2003 Champ Car World Series with Fittipaldi Dingman Racing. Ten top-ten finishes and pole position in Mexico.
2004 Rookie of the year in Nissan World Series, finishing second overall with Carlin Motorsport and taking five wins and four pole positions. Formula One test driver with Minardi.
2005 Highly consistent debut season with Jordan sees him take rookie of the year honours after finishing 18 of 19 races. Scores Portugal's first podium in depleted US Grand Prix and, more impressively, scores a hard-earned point for eighth place at Spa.

In 1997, aged 20, Tiago contested the French Porsche Carrera Cup, winning the championship easily with 5 wins and 5 poles. Formula One team bosses got to see the youngster in action in the Porsche Super Cup race which supported the Grand Prix, the young Portuguese driver finishing sixth.

In 1998, Tiago switched to single-seaters, but finished a disappointing twelfth in the French F3 Championship. That said, two fourth places were enough to earn him the 'Rookie of the Year' award.

In 1999 he stayed in French F3, finishing six overall, with one win and three other podium visits. The youngster also took part in the Le Mans 24-hours, finish 16th overall and 6th in the GT2 class. In addition to all this, Tiago contested the International Renault Finals at Estoril, in his native Portugal, taking pole position, fastest lap and a fine win.

He persisted with the French F2 Championship in 2000, finishing runner-up with four wins. He also finished runner-up in the European F3 Championship, winning at Spa, 2nd in the Korean Super Prix and 9th at Macau. To round off a perfect season he also contested several rounds of the Lamborghini Super Trophy, taking fastest lap at Magny Cours and Laguna Seca.

In 2001, he once again contested the French F3 Championship, and once again finished runner up, despite 6 poles and 4 wins. He also took two wins in the French GT Championship and a further two wins in Formula France.

In 2002, Tiago contested the International F3000 Championship with Super Nova, finishing twelfth overall with five top-10 finishes. His hard work, and results, had not gone unnoticed and following a test with the Renault F1 team, Tiago was taken on board as part of the French outfit's Driver Development Scheme.

For 2003, Tiago switched to Champ Cars, joining Emerson Fittipaldi's team, taking one pole position and five top-ten finishes.

In 2004, the Portuguese youngster contested the Nissan World Series with Carlin Motorsport, in addition to carrying out testing duties with the Minardi F1 team.

In late January 2005, following the buy-out of the Jordan F1 team by Alex Shnaider and his Midland F1 team, rumours that Tiago could be about to make his F1 race debut began circulating. Other than his undisputed talent, the other reason that people were taking the story seriously was due to the youngster's close ties to Trevor Carlin, who had been appointed sporting director at Midland F1.

On 3 February, the Silverstone-based outfit announced that Tiago would contest the 2005 Formula One World Championship season alongside Indian hot-shot Narain Karthikeyan.

Looking back, and ignoring the ludicrous circumstances surrounding the event, one of the most memorable moments of the season was the sheer unbridled joy of Tiago on the podium at Indianapolis.

Yes, fourteen drivers, representing seven teams had withdrawn from the event, and yes, the Portuguese driver had only finished ahead of his teammate and the two Minardis. Nonetheless, he had made it onto the F1 podium and thus entered the F1 record books.

Tiago's performance that day was typical of his season, there were no fireworks, no sensational moves - was such a thing possible in that car - he simply kept his head down and got on with the job of bringing the car home.

Such was the car's reliability, and Tiago's consistency, the Portuguese driver came within sixteen laps of another unique record, being the only driver to complete every round of the longest season in the sport's history.

Although Karthikeyan came to F1 with (arguably) the better reputation, Monteiro more than held his own, indeed most people would concede that the Portuguese driver came out of the 2005 season looking a better prospect, indeed he secured a race seat, whereas the Indian didn't.

Although Karthikeyan was quicker, Monteiro drove with his brain, nursing the car home, and thereby giving his team valuable data without having to go to the further expanse of testing. Furthermore, despite the Indian's apparent speed advantage, honours in qualifying were equally divided.

It seems only right that after all his effort, Tiago won a 'real' (his word) race point in the Belgian Grand Prix, having finished eighth at Spa, the drivers' circuit.

Although it took forever to officially confirm the deal, Tiago will partner Christijan Albers in 2006, as Midland - in its first proper season - has retained his services.

It is unlikely, barring an engineering miracle or another Indy-style 'walkout' that we're going to see the Portuguese drive on the podium again this season, however, if he continues where he left off in 2005 there is every chance that another outfit might give him a run in 2007 - after all, at least fourteen drivers' contracts run out this season.

Over the years, Tiago has not only demonstrated tremendous pace, but also a willingness - much like the good old days - to drive anything, anywhere, the guy simply adores racing. It's good to have him in F1.

Statistics - Prior to 2006 Season
Drivers' Titles: 0
Seasons in F1: 1
Grand Prix: 19
Wins: 0
Points: 7
Poles: 0
Fastest Laps: 0

Best result in 2005: 3rd (USA)
Best qualifying 2005: 13th (Brazil)
Worst qualifying 2005: 20th (Britain, Hungary and Japan)
Average grid position: 17.21
2005: Out-qualified Karthikeyan 9 times

2005: Completed: 1125 out of 1180 laps (95.34%)
2005: Finished 18 times from 19 starts (95%)


No 19 - Christijan Albers


Date of birth: 16/04/1979
Place of birth: Eindhoven, Netherlands
Lives: Laren, Netherlands
Marital status: Single
Height: 1.76m
Weight: 68kg

Driven for:
Minardi (2005)
Midland (2006)

Website: http://www.christijan.com/

Biography
1997 Wins Dutch national kart championship, plus Belgian and Dutch Formula Ford 1800 titles.
1998 Finishes fifth in German F3 series with two wins and five podiums.
1999 German Formula Three champion with six wins and ten poles.
2000 Competes in International Formula 3000 series.
2001 Test and reserve driver for Minardi. First season in German DTM series.
2002 Test driver with Minardi and second season in DTM.
2003 Runner-up in DTM championship with four wins.
2004 Third in DTM series with Mercedes. Scores one win and six podium places.
2005 Steady Formula One debut season with Minardi. Highlights are 13th on the grid in Japan and fifth place in the Bridgestone-only US Grand Prix. Signed by MF1 for 2006.

Like nearly all of his contemporaries, Christijan Albers began his racing career in Karting.

In 1997, in addition to winning the Dutch National Kart Championship (ICA 100cc), the youngster (still only 18), won the Benelux Formula Ford 1800 Championship, in addition to the Renault Megan Marlboro Masters at Zandvoort.

In 1998, Christijan moved up to the prestigious German F3 series, finishing fifth overall, courtesy of five podium visits, which included two wins.

A year later, the Dutch star clinched the title, with an impressive six wins and ten pole positions.

For 2000, the youngster made the switch to F3000, contesting the championship with the European Arrows Junior Team.

Rather than remain in F3000 in 2001, Albers made the move to DTM, he also took part in his first Formula One test with Minardi, subsequently being appointed reserve driver for the Italian team.

For 2002 he remained in DTM, driving a Mercedes for Team Rosberg, in addition to taking part in further tests for the Minardi F1 team.

For 2003, he moved to the Team HWA DTM team, going on to take his first win, at Adria, followed by additional wins at the Nurburgring, Norisring and Zandvoort. At season end, Christijan was runner-up to Bernd Schneider, and despite having won more races, missed out on the title by just four points.

Surprisingly, despite talk linking him with a number of F1 teams, Albers opted to remain in DTM for 2004, this time finishing third behind Mattias Ekström and Gary Paffett. It's believed that rather than pay for an F1 drive, Christijan preferred to further develop his talents in DTM, and at the same time be paid for his services, which is surely what being a professional racing driver is all about.

In mid-November 2004, it was announced that Christijan was to test for the Jordan team, raising hopes that he could make his F1 race debut in 2005. A month later, on December 23, the youngster signed to rivals Minardi, on reflection this might have been the best move.

To some it may have appeared that Christijan's decision to sign for the underperforming Italian outfit was a major step backwards, however, let's not forget that Giancarlo Fisichella, Jarno Trulli, Fernando Alonso and Mark Webber all attracted the attention of the bigger teams whilst driving for the perennial backmarkers.

Furthermore, following the departure of Eddie Jordan and the arrival of Alex Shnaider the situation at Dadford Road throughout much of 2005 was one of confusion and, to a certain extent, despair.

Despite the limitations of the equipment at his disposal, Christijan gave a fairly good account of himself in 2005, though he definitely found the competition a little harder once Robert Doornbos arrived.

For the first eleven rounds of the season, the Dutch driver was partnered by Austrian Friesacher, who, in qualifying, kept the Dutchman on his toes. However, in the races it was Christijan who appeared to hold the upper hand, getting the car home, when not sidelined by technical failures, whilst Friesacher frequently ended up in the gravel.

When the Austrian's money ran out, Minardi called on the services of Jordan test driver Robert Doornbos, making it a case of 'Double Dutch' for the Faenza outfit.

Doornbos was an altogether different kind of driver, and pushed his fellow 'Dutchie' hard… very hard. Although Albers had the qualifying pace, Doornbos invariably drove the better race.

The highlight of Christijan's season - other than fifth in that pathetic excuse of a race at Indianapolis - was his mammoth qualifying effort at Montreal where he put the black and white car fourteenth on the grid.

Like Friesacher and Doornbos, Albers spent much of the 2005 season fighting with the Jordans of Tiago Monteiro and Narain Karthikeyan, enjoying a series of mini-Grands Prix with the Silverstone-based outfit.

In 2006, the Dutch driver heads to Midland F1, formerly Jordan, with every likelihood of spending the season enjoying more mini-Grand Prix, this time with Super Aguri.

There's no doubting that Christijan has pace and enjoys a scrap. However, if there's a downside to his character it became apparent post season when he used the media to criticise his former teammate, Doornbos. It was unnecessary, and in actual fact untrue, for Robert had performed well, and according to sources at Minardi was far easier to get along with.

Christijan is a proven winner, if his F1 career is to flourish he will have to abandon the sniping at other drivers and concentrate on doing the best possible job, no matter how bad the equipment.

Statistics - Prior to 2006 Season
Drivers' Titles: 0
Seasons in F1: 1
Grand Prix: 19
Wins: 0
Points: 4
Poles: 0
Fastest Laps: 0

Best result in 2005: 5th (USA)
Best qualifying 2005: 13th (Japan)
Worst qualifying 2005: 20th (5 times)
Average grid position: 17.47
2005: Out-qualified Patrick Friesacher 5 times
2005: Out-qualified Robert Doornbos 6 time6
2005: Completed: 956 out of 1180 laps (81.02%)
2005: Finished 13 times from 19 starts (68%)
 
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Midland F1 Test/Reserve Driver - Giorgio Mondini



Date of birth: 19/09/1980
Place of birth: Geneva, Switzerland
Lives: Geneva, Switzerland
Marital status: Single
Height: 1.76m
Weight: 68kg


Driven for:
Midland F1 (Test Driver) (2006)

Webpage: http://www.giorgiomondini.com/

Biography
1994 Karting
2001 Formula Renault 2000 Eurocup, 26th place.
2002 Formula Renault 2000 Eurocup, 17th place.
2003 Formula Renault V6, seventh place.
2004 Formula Renault V6, champion (3 wins, 3 pole positions, 8 podiums)
2005 GP2 Series with David Price Racing, part season. World Series - Formula Renault 3.5, with Eurointernational/Carlin - part season. 24th overall. Scored 5 points. Formula One, one-off test with Renault at Barcelona (in December).
2006 Formula One - official test/reserve driver for Midland MF1 Racing.

Giorgio Mondini is the first to admit that he came into motorsport "very late", though in truth he was only twenty.

That said, compared to many of the current crop of F1 racers and test drivers, who were often karting long before their teens, twenty probably is quite late.

Giorgio did do some Karting as a youngster, signing up for the Swiss-French Championship at the age 14, which he admits was more of a "free-for-all" than real racing.

His father, a former racer himself, wanted to nurture his son's talent, but was also determined that he should have a proper formal education. Consequently, in addition to his normal education, the youngster was enrolled at the Henry Morough Racing School driver training school at Perrugia, where he got his basic training in Formula Ford.

A couple of years down the line, Giorgio was enrolled at the Axai school in Vallelunga, and it was here that he further honed his talents, finally obtaining his racing licence.

Between the ages of 16 and 18 his racing career was put on hold. However, in his own words: "My dad arranged driving training for me at Magny-Cours and I was still in the area to be able to take advantage of it. I know the circuit by heart, I bet I've done 1,500 laps there!"

At the age of 19, he did some Formula Renault 2000 testing, and it was here that he came up against drivers such as Nicolas Lapierre.

He then spent a year in England, learning the language, before returning home to contest the Formula Renault 2000 Eurocup. "The races often did not go as I expected," he admits, "but it was a good experience".

He contested the Winter Series, and got off to a fine start by taking second at Misano, however, a crash at Vallelunga, in which he wrecked his car, brought his role in the competition to an early end.

In 2002 he remained in the Formula Renault 2000 Eurocup, now partnered by fellow-Swiss driver, Neel Jani. It was a tough season for Giorgio, and though the results didn't go his way, not helped by the fact, due to the lack of a decent budget, that he was driving a three-year-old car, he was still learning.

After a fairly successful campaign in the American Formula Renault 2000 Winter Series, Giorgio was given a drive with Euorointernational in the Formula Renault V6 Championship.

Sadly it was a dreadful year for Giorgio who was badly injured in a road accident in Monaco, and therefore unable to contest the Formula Renault V6 event that supported the Grand Prix. Subsequently, he was emotionally damaged by a number of tragedies within his family, including the death of a younger brother.

2004 was altogether better, and Giorgio won the V6 Championship, with 3 wins, 3 pole positions and 8 podiums.

"Two months before the end of the 2004 season, I was the driver to beat," he recalls. "I had to learn how not to react to provocation on the track, to be careful, and to curb my enthusiasm in order to be able to end up on the top step of the podium. Living at a healthy pace helps a lot to face and handle the situation. At the end of 2004, I finished champion of Formula Renault V6, the consecration!"

In 2005 he began the year scheduled to contest the World Series by Renault with Eurointernational, however, after a few rounds he switched to GP2, driving for David Price Racing, having signed a management deal with Nicholas Todt, son of Ferrari boss, Jean Todt.

The highlight of Giorgio's year undoubtedly came on December 1, when he drove a Renault F1 car at Barcelona, posting a best time just 1s slower than Robert Kubica who subsequently joined BMW as third driver.

On February 2, on the eve of the launch of the Midland F1 Racing M16, the Russian team announced that Giorgio would drive the car in the Friday practice sessions at nine rounds of the 2006 Formula One World Championship. However, the Bahrain Grand Prix isn't one of them, for Giorgio will be busy driving the Swiss entry in the A1 Grand Prix Championship at Laguna Seca.

Things certainly seem to be looking up for this 'late starter'.


Midland F1 Test/Reserve Driver - Markus Winkelhock

head-winkelhock.jpg


Date of birth: 13/06/1980
Place of birth: Bad Cannstatt, Germany
Lives: Bad Cannstatt, Germany
Marital status: Single


Driven for:
Midland F1 (Test Driver) (2006)


Biography
2000 F.Renault 2000 Italy: Sl Racing, 21th, 8 points
2001 F3 Germany: Mücke Motorsport, 5th, 141 points (3 wins, 8 podiums, 2 pole positions, 3 fastest laps)
2002 F3 Germany: Mücke Motorsport, 6th, 28 points (1 win, 2 podiums, 2 pole positions, 3 fastest laps)
2003 F3 Euro: Mücke Motorsport, 4th, 71 points (2 wins, 5 podiums, 1 pole position, 3 fastest laps)
2004 DTM: Original-Teile/CLK AMG-Mercedes, 19th, 0 points
2005 WS Renault: Draco Multiracing USA, 3rd, 114 points (3 wins, 7 podiums, 1 pole position, 2 fastest laps)
2006 F1 Tests: MF1 Racing

Markus Winkelhock is the son of former F1 star, Manfred, who was killed during a Sportscar event at Mosport Park in 1985, in the days were drivers were (contractually) free to contest other race series in addition to their F1 commitments.

In 1998, Markus contested the German Formula König series, progressing to the German Formula Renault series a year later.

In 2000 he switched to the Formula Renault Eurocup, before spending two seasons in German F3 with the Mucke team. It was at this time that his raw pace - similar to that of his father - became apparent, particularly to rival team boss, Colin Kolles, who was to later become team principal at Midland F1 Racing.

For 2003 he moved to the Formula 3 Euroseries, before switching to DTM in 2004, driving the Persson Mercedes.

In 2005 he contested the Formula Renault 3.5 World Series, finishing third overall, driving for the Draco Multiracing USA Team, following three wins and some thrilling battles with Robert Kubica, who subsequently landed the test role with the BMW F1 team.

His performances led to a test drive with Midland F1 Racing in December 2005, and this subsequently led to the German being given the role of test, and reserve, driver with the Russian team in 2006.


Midland F1 Test/Reserve Driver - Adrian Sutil



Date of birth: 11/01/1983
Place of birth: Starnberg, Germany
Lives: Starnberg, Germany
Marital status: Single

Driven for:
Midland F1 (Test Driver) (2006)

Webpage: http://www.adrian-sutil.de/

Biography
1997-2000 Karting.
2002 Swiss Formula Ford 1800 championship, first place.
2003 German Formula BMW Championship, sixth place.
2004 Formula 3 Euro Series, 15th place.
2005 Formula 3 Euro Series with ASM F3, second place.
2005/06 A1 GP - representing Germany. Selected events.
2006 Formula One - official test/reserve driver for Midland MF1 Racing.


Following two years in Formula 3's EuroSeries, the latter finishing 2nd to up-and-coming British talent Lewis Hamilton, Sutil was confirmed as one of A1 Team Germany's drivers for the inaugural A1GP series. In January he and three others were confirmed as MF1 Racing's Formula One test drivers. Markus Winkelhock and Giorgio Mondini will likely split time with Sutil filling in the remainder of the Friday practice sessions.
 
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Team HQ
Based in: Faenza, Italy
Founded: 2005 (active since 2006)

Scuderia Toro Rosso Spa
Via Spallanzani, 21 zi
45018 Faenza (RA)
Italy

Tel: (39) 0546 696 111
Fax: (39) 0546 620 998

Website: http://www.scuderiatororosso.com/

Team Structure

Team Principal: Franz Tost
Sporting Director: Gerhard Berger
Technical Director: Gabriele Tredozi


Team Biography
Scuderia Toro Rosso - Team Red Bull, in Italian - was formed from the Minardi team at the end of 2005, following Paul Stoddart's decision to sell the outfit to Red Bull owner, Dietrich Mateschitz...

The Minardi team itself though was successful in several junior formulae - particularly F2 - before graduating to Formula One in 1985.

The team's first year in the big time was disappointing, however, as the all-Italian team struggled to make an impression. The inexperienced Pier-Luigi Martini was dropped for 1986 in favour of the seasoned Andrea de Cesaris and rookie Alessandro Nannini, but the team again failed to score any points. Ironically, only when Martini returned - older and wiser - to the fold in 1988, did the team finally break its duck, taking sixth place in Detroit.

Minardi's history was punctuated by a series of fund-raising takeovers and mergers. In 1994, Minardi merged with Italian rivals BMS Scuderia Italia in order to attract greater home sponsorship, before being taken over by an Italian consortium including former driver Alessandro Nannini and then Benetton boss Flavio Briatore.

Minardi is also noted for taking risks on young, unproven drivers. Although the experiment with Martini failed first time around, Minardi can claim to have introduced to F1 the likes of Nannini, Morbidelli and Fittipaldi, and in recent years Giancarlo Fisichella, Jarno Trulli, Fernando Alonso and Mark Webber.

Finances bolstered by the inclusion of Japanese driver Shinji Nakano and Argentinian youngster Esteban Tuero, Minardi continued the battle against better funded opposition in 1998. Several narrow misses failed to register any points, but the potential remained, as Nakano proved by battling with the Jordan cars in Monaco.

Minardi's 1999 campaign started badly when rated teenager Tuero mysteriously quit the team. He was replaced by Marc Gene, with Ferrari tester Luca Badoer signed late as partner to the Spaniard. The new M01 chassis showed flashes of promise, however, with Gene taking it to fourth spot in one pre-season test. Despite being written off as just another pay driver, Gene continued to do well throughout the year and finally took the team's first point for several seasons at the European GP.

With Badoer opting to return to testing duties in 2000, the team looked to South America for a replacement. Newly-installed part owner/sponsor Telefonica demanded an Argentine, and former test driver Gaston Mazzacane was duly appointed to partner Gene.

From the outset of the 2000 season it was clear that the MO2 was a tidy car and throughout the year Gene ran with cars he had no right to be anywhere near but was constantly hampered by the team's two year old Ford engine.

Sadly neither Gene nor Mazzacane scored a point and Minardi's year ended on a sour note when Telefonica announced they would be leaving the team. A deal with the Pan-American Sports Network fell through at the last minute and with Gene signing to be the Williams test driver, Minardi's prospects looked bleak with no drivers, engines or sponsors. Thankfully Paul Stoddart, the man who bought the remains of the Tyrrell operation, was there to rescue them and the team was present on the grid in Melbourne, in 2001.

The new car, christened the PS01, undoubtedly suffered from a lack of testing and an inexperienced driver line-up, young F3000 standout Fernando Alonso being signed to partner ex-Minardi driver and Champcar pilot Tarso Marques. But, while Marques floudered, his young Spanish counterpart flourished, and built on the reputation he had brought to F1 with him.

Minardi, too, won more hearts and began to embarrass the likes of Prost and Arrows at the back of the grid, as Alonso outqualified both teams with a car that should not have had the power to do so.

Marques left for the final three races, as Malaysian backing helped ease FNippon racer Alex Yoong into the second seat. Yoong's debut race started inauspiciously, as both Minardis ground to a halt within sight of the pit-lane at Monza, but Yoong did enough to be retained for 2002.

There, without the Renault-bound Alonso, the Malaysian was partnered by Mark Webber - who became the first Australian since David Brabham in 1994, to land a race seat in F1.

Despite the loss of inspirational technical director Gustav Brunner to Toyota mid-2001, the new PS02 went reasonably well and with Asiatech V10's the team had the benefit of not having to pay, some £8-15 million for engines.

The year began brightly for Stoddart's team, and after a massive pile-up at the start of the Australian GP, which eliminated nearly half the field, Webber held off the Toyota of Mika Salo to finish fifth and claim two points. It was the highlight of the season and something the team failed to match again throughout 2002.

Indeed for Stoddart most of the year was devoted to legal battles, concerning the TV money that would have gone to the former Prost team.

There was also other difficulties, most noticeably at the Spanish GP, when the team was forced to withdraw from the race after both cars suffered wing failures in qualifying. Add to this the problems with Yoong, who failed to qualifying for three races - and who was 'rested' for the Hungarian and Belgium GP's, when Anthony Davidson stood in - and you have a less than easy season.

Stoddart though remained at the helm in 2003 bringing in 2001 F3000 champion, Justin Wilson, and the experienced Jos Verstappen. They also returned to using Ford Cosworth engines, and despite again struggling with finances, managed to complete the year - an achievement in itself for such a small team.

Indeed Wilson managed to impress those at Jaguar with his performances in the PS03, his race starts were a major talking point early on in the season, and he eventually left for the Milton Keynes based squad prior to the German GP. Nicolas Kiesa took his place, but just like Wilson, and Verstappen, failed to notch up any significant results - the outfits best result all year was a ninth place finish in Canada, courtesy of Verstappen.

The following season, 2004, was equally tough and having purchased the old Arrows A23 cars from receivers in June 2003, the Minardi PS04B was a development of the PS03, with the best bits from the A23 added on.

Gianmaria Bruni and Zsolt Baumgartner were nominated as their drivers, and although there were few highs they did manage to at least score a point, Baumgartner taking eighth place at the US Grand Prix - it was their best finish all season.

Despite the usual financial problems that have plagued the squad, and Ford's decision to sell off Cosworth, Minardi continued in 2005. They fielded cars for Christijan Albers and Patrick Friesacher, although the latter lost his seat after his money ran out, something that let Robert Doornbos into the fold for the final eight grand's prix.

Minardi managed to score 7 points in 2005, after finishing fifth and sixth at the US GP - however that result only came about as all the Michelin teams failed to race, leaving only Bridgestone-shod Ferrari, Jordan/Midland and Minardi in the 'grand prix'.

By the season end Minardi's future was again said to be uncertain and with Red Bull owner, Dietrich Mateschitz interested in acquiring the outfit, Stoddart sold out to secure the future of his employees.

Minardi will now be re-named Scuderia Toro Rosso in 2006 and as such Red Bull juniors, Vitantonio Liuzzi and Scott Speed have been drafted in to drive the two cars. Neel Jani has been signed as the team's third driver, while former BMW man, Franz Tost comes in as team manager, replacing former Minardi boss, Paul Stoddart.

Ex-F1 driver, Gerhard Berger has also joined the fold, taking a 50 per cent stake in the team.


str1.jpg



STR1 Technical Specifications
Details not available at this time

Dimensions
Details not available at this time

Cosworth V10
Details not available at this time
 
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No 20 - Vitantonio Liuzzi


Date of birth: 06/08/1981
Place of birth: Locorotondo, Italy
Lives: Pescara, Italy
Marital status: Single
Height: 1.77m
Weight: 67kg

Driven for:
Red Bull Racing (2005)
Toro Rosso (2006)

Website: http://www.liuzzi.com/

Biography
2001 First season of single-seater racing. Runner-up in German Formula Renault championship.
2002 Ninth overall in German Formula 3 championship. Formula One test with Williams.
2003 Finishes fourth in the FIA International Formula 3000 championship, the season's best-placed rookie.
2004 Wins the last ever FIA International Formula 3000 championship with Arden.
2005 Makes Formula One debut with Red Bull in San Marino, scoring a point on first appearance. Results in subsequent three outings less impressive and rival Christian Klien fills their shared seat for the remainder of the season, with Liuzzi taking third driver role.

A win over world champion Michael Schumacher brought Vitantonio Liuzzi to the racing world's full attention, and has helped fast-track his road to the top flight ever since.

The Italian was largely just another promising kart racer before his meeting with Schumacher, starting his career at the tender age of ten, and collecting Italian junior titles and podium results on the international scene. Moving into the senior ranks, he finally earned a major honour with the 1999 European title and Ayrton Senna trophy, but it was two years later that his career received its biggest boost.

Much had been made about Schumacher's decision to contest the 2001 world kart championship event in Germany but, in poor conditions, it was Liuzzi who stole the rest of the headlines by winning the title. His name was then the one on everybody's lips, despite having simultaneously spent a year in the German Formula Renault championship, finishing as runner-up.

Having already tested an F3 car for the Dutch van Amersfoort team in 2000, many expected Liuzzi to step straight up into the category and go quickly. The crack Bertram Schafer team which had guided Schumacher in his formative years, provided a home for the Italian, and he was indeed quickly on the pace, taking three second places on his way to ninth overall. His speed was never in doubt, as three pole positions attested, and a maiden race win came in the non-championship outing at Imola.

Despite not being a title contender, Liuzzi's karting performances, allied to those in both FRenault and F3, had brought him to the attention of drinks brand Red Bull, and he was duly added to the company's roster of sponsored drivers. As a result, he was also handed a seat in F3000 with Red Bull's Junior team, which was run by Coloni Motorsport.

He was also invited, along with fellow Italian Giorgio Pantano, to test with the Williams team but, while Pantano was considered a possible contender for a seat with the team, Liuzzi generally out-performed him. Neither was offered a drive, however.

His first year in the FIA F3000 series contained a series of fourth place finishes that belied his rookie status, but also frustrated Liuzzi, who was keen to break on to the podium. He appeared to have his best chance of doing so at the Hungaroring, where he qualified on pole by almost half a second - despite never having seen the track before practice - and was leading comfortably when his mandatory pit-stop - only introduced at that event - went awry. A penalty for forceful driving as he attempted to recover lost ground eventually pushed him further down the order. There wasn't another chance to run at the front, but fourth in the championship was enough to convince champions Arden International to sign him for 2004.

The move cemented his reputation as, despite a concerted effort by compatriot Enrico Toccacelo, Liuzzi romped to the title on the back of a record-equalling seven race wins.

That set him up for a crack at Formula One but, just days before he was due to test with Sauber - an outing that many believed would confirm him as part of the Swiss team's line-up for 2005 - former world champion Jacques Villeneuve inked a contract. Liuzzi continued with his test, and impressed with both his speed and feedback.

Testing opportunities were being talked about at both Williams and Ferrari, but another important decision was being taken a little further down the pit-lane that would shape Liuzzi's immediate F1 future. With Jaguar Racing ailing badly, and owners Ford about to pull the plug, Red Bull staged a last-ditch buy-out, fulfilling Dietrich Mateschitz's dream of owning his own F1 team. Liuzzi was immediately touted as one of the team's drivers, but Mateschitz took the opportunity of bringing in the experienced David Coulthard to provide some knowledge and guidance, leaving just one seat for the Italian and Jaguar incumbent Christian Klien to fight over.

With both drivers already backed by Red Bull, Mateschitz decided that they should share the second seat, with Klien getting three races before Liuzzi finally made his F1 debut on home soil at Imola.

The Italian's first grand prix went well and he even managed a point, taking eighth place, following the exclusion of the two BAR's. He then raced at Barcelona, Monte Carlo and at the Nurburgring, however he had to wait until the European GP to notch up another finish, after two successive retirements. A ninth place finish though at the 'ring was not enough to secure the seat and Klien was brought back for the following events.

Although Liuzzi was led to believe he would at least get another sequence of three or so races during 2005, Red Bull eventually decided that swapping drivers was counter-productive. Liuzzi therefore sat out the rest of the season, although he did continue to test and take part in the Friday practice sessions, as the outfit's official third driver. The only exception was the US and Canadian GP's, when Scott Speed, another Red Bull backed driver, got the nod for the Friday role due to his American passport.

In 2006 Liuzzi will get a full-season in F1, following Red Bull's takeover of the Minardi team, now renamed Scuderia Toro Rosso - 'Team Red Bull' in Italian. STR is effectively Red Bull's junior team and Liuzzi will be partnered by Speed.

Statistics - Prior to 2006 Season
Drivers' Titles: 0
Seasons in F1: 1
Grand Prix: 4
Wins: 0
Points: 1
Poles: 0
Fastest Laps: 0

Best result in 2005: 8th (San Marino)
Best qualifying 2005: 11th (Spain)
Worst qualifying 2005: 16th (San Marino)
Average grid position: 13.25
2005: Out-qualified David Coulthard 0 times
2005: Completed: 189 out of 265 laps (71.32%)
2005: Finished 2 times from 4 starts (50%)


No 21 - Scott Speed


Date of birth: 24/01/1983
Place of birth: Manteca, Calafornia, USA
Lives: Fuschi am See, Austria
Marital status: Single
Height: 1.77m
Weight: 69kg

Driven for:
Toro Rosso (2006)

Website: http://www.scottspeed.com/

Biography
2002 Wins Red Bull's American Driver Search Programme and with it a 2003 British Formula 3 drive.
2003 Unable to complete full season in British Formula 3 after falling ill with colitis, a digestive tract condition.
2004 Wins the Formula Renault German and Eurocup Championships.
2005 Third overall in GP2 championship. Signs as Red Bull test driver and appears as their third Friday driver in Canada and US. Wins race seat in sister Toro Rosso squad for 2006.

It's a name straight out of Hollywood, Scott Speed.

Those of you, of 'a certain age', will remember the cartoon character 'Skid Solo, then there was Scott Stoddard and Pete Aron of Grand Prix fame. However, compared to Scott Speed they pale into insignificance.

To add to the 'legend', Scott is from California, and in many ways his progress towards F1 does read like a Hollywood script. Basically, he appears to be a born-winner.

As is (nearly) always the case, Scott started off in Karts, participating in his first event aged nine. Two years later he picked up his first national championship title going on to win numerous titles and championships between 1996 and 2001. Indeed, Scott became the only Karter to ever win two Super Nationals, which he achieved consecutively in 2000 and 2001.

That same year (2001), Scott made his single-seater debut, contesting the Jim Russell Racing Championship, winning the series at the first attempt.

In 2002 he ran with great success in the Skip Barber National Championship as well as contesting a number of rounds of the Formula Mazda Championship, this brought him to the attention of the Red Bull Driver Search, the programme instigated with the intention of discovering American racing talent.

In (seemingly) no time at all, he was in the run-offs, up against some of his country's leading youngsters and going on to win the inaugural programme.

Part of his prize for winning the Red Bull Driver Search was a season in the highly prestigious British F3 Championship with Alan Docking Racing. Unfortunately, illness meant that he missed a number of races.

In 2004, Scott contested the Formula Renault championships in both Germany and Europe with German-based Motopark Academy. In addition to winning both championships, thus becoming the first ever American to win a European Junior Formula Championship, Scott was given the opportunity to test with the Red Bull Cheever IRL Racing team and contributed valuable feedback.

In 2005, the young American moved up to the new GP2 series, joining British-based iSport International. In pre-season qualifying at Paul Ricard he helped win his team the coveted numbers '1' and '2' on its cars for the inaugural season.

Although he never won any rounds of the championship, Scott was a regular visitor to the podium, eventually finishing third in the title race behind Nico Rosberg and Heikki Kovalainen.

In late March, Scott made his F1 test debut, when he tested the Red Bull car at Barcelona. He topped the timesheets, outpacing established WilliamsF1 drivers Nick Heidfeld and Antonio Pizzonia, as well as fellow Red Bull tester, Neel Jani.

Following another short but successful test in early June, it was announced that Scott would drive the third car in the Friday free practice sessions at both the Canadian and United States Grands Prix, the first American to drive an F1 car 'in anger' for a decade.

Over the winter, Scott added to his CV by taking part in a number of rounds of another inaugural series, the A1 Grand Prix World Cup of Motorsport, his best result being fourth in the Feature Race at Estoril.

Although it is good to see the United States represented in F1 once again, there are some who believe that Scott is not the real deal, and will struggle when push comes to shove. Indeed, there are some who believe that Scott's F1 career will be as short-lived and unfulfilling as his predecessor, Michael Andretti.

In 2006 Scott lines up alongside Tonio Liuzzi for Toro Rosso, the only team running (restricted) V10 engines.

Until the FIA finds a way to create a fair balance between the V10s and V8s, it is going to be difficult to see how Scott compares to his rivals, though it will be interesting to see how he measures up to the Italian 'hot-shot' Liuzzi.

Thus far it reads pretty much like a Hollywood movie script; can Scott go all the way and emulate the achievements of fellow-Americans Phil Hill and Mario Andretti, or is he destined to be remembered merely for his name?
 
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Scuderia Toro Rosso Test/Reserve Driver - Neel Jani



Date of birth: 08/12/1983
Place of birth: Jens, Switzerland
Lives: Jens, Switzerland
Marital status: Single
Height: 1.73m
Weight: 60kg

Driven for:
Scuderia Toro Rosso (Test Driver) (2006)

Webpage: http://www.neel-jani.com/

Biography
1989 First Go-Kart
1999 Swiss and International Go-Kart Championship
2000 Swiss Formula Arcobaleno Championship (8 wins, 4 2nd places)
2000 F.Renault, France: 3 races
2001 F.Renault 2000 Italy: RC Motorsport, 2 races, 19th, 16 points
2001 F.Renault, Europe
2002 F.Renault 2000 Italy: Jenzer Motorsport, 1 race, 17th, 16 points
2002 F.Renault, Europe: 2nd
2003 F1 Tests: Sauber Petronas
2003 F.Renault V6: Jenzer Motorsport, 2nd, 350 points (4 wins, 12 podiums, 3 pole positions, 3 fastest laps)
2004 F1 Tests: Sauber Petronas
2004 F.Renault V6: DAMS, 4th, 239 points (4 wins, 7 podiums, 8 pole positions, 4 fastest laps)
2005 F1 Tests: Red Bull Racing
2005 A1GP: Switzerland
2005 GP2: Racing Engineering, 7th, 48 points (2 wins, 1 pole position)
2006 F1 Tests: Scuderia Toro Rosso

Neel Jani's career began in karts in 1996, at the age of 12. Naturally he started off in the mini class, progressing, over the next couple of years to Junior and finally Formula A, becoming Swiss Champion in 2000.

In 2001, aged 17, he made the switch to single-seaters, contesting the Formula Renault 2000 Eurocup, whilst also participating in a number of rounds of the Italian Formula Renault series.

For 2002 he remained with the Formula Renault 2000 Eurocup, finishing runner-up, and once again took part in a limited number of rounds of the Italian Formula Renault Championship.

2003 saw him move up to the Formula Renault V6 Eurocup, driving for the Jenzer team, with which he finished runner-up, he also took part in a number of F1 tests for Sauber.

In 2004 he remained in the Formula Renault V6 Eurocup, but switched to the highly successful DAMS team, with which he also contested a round of the FIA GT Championship.

In 2005 he made the move to the new GP2 series, partnering Borja Garcia at Racing Engineering. Some spirited performances, including wins at the Hungaroring and Monza, saw the Swiss driver finish seventh in the inaugural championship.

In late 2005, Neel represented his country in another new series, A1 Grand Prix, and following some spirited performance in the early rounds, finally broke the French team's stranglehold on the championship by taking a well-deserved win in Dubai.

A 'product' of the Red Bull Junior Team, it shouldn't have come as too much of a shock when Jani was named as test, and reserve, driver for Scuderia Toro Rosso, the former Minardi F1 team purchased by Red Bull in late 2005. The youngster will line up alongside Tonio Liuzzi and American Scott Speed, giving the Faenza based outfit an average age of just 23. The announcement was made just two days before the Swiss driver's twenty-second birthday.

Ironically, motor racing is still banned in Switzerland, following the disaster at Le Mans in 1955. Hopefully, the country which gave us Jo Siffert, and gave its name to a Grand Prix in 1982 - albeit at Dijon in France - might reconsider its stance as Neel begins to make his mark on the sport.
 
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Team HQ
Based in: Langley, Oxfordshire
Founded: 2005 (active 2006)

Super Aguri F1
Leafield Technical Centre
Langley
Witney
Oxfordshire
OX29 9EF

Tel:
Fax:

Website: www.superaguri-f1.com

Team Structure

Team Principal: Aguri Suzuki
Managing Director: Daniel Audetto
Chief Finance Director & Company Secretary: Wayne Humphries
Chief Operations Officer: Kevin Lee
Chief Technical Officer: Mark Preston
Chief Designer: Peter McCool

Press Officer and Driver Liaison: Emma Bearpark

Team Manager: Mick Ainsley-Cowlishaw
Chief Mechanic: Phill Spencer
Chief Race Engineer: Graham Taylor
Race Engineer, Car No: 22: Gérry Hughes
Race Engineer, Car No: 23: Antonio Cuquerella

Team Biography
The Super Aguri F1 team is the newest outfit to enter the sport - and the first completely new entry since Toyota appeared on the scene in 2001.

The project first became public in the run-up to the Japanese Grand Prix in 2005 and followed the fall-out after Honda's decision to sign Rubens Barrichello and Jenson Button for 2006, a move that left Takuma Sato out in the cold and potentially without a drive for the coming year.

As a means to appease their Japanese fans, Honda therefore floated the idea of forming a kind of 'B' team and in stepped former Japanese F1 driver, Aguri Suzuki to head the project.

Aguri quickly took over the premises previously used by the Arrows team in Leafield in the UK and began a rapid recruitment drive to put together the personnel to run the team.

The team's birth though has been far from easy which is of little surprise when you consider the outfit has been put together in such a short space of time.

Furthermore while they quickly gained guarantees that Honda would supply them with engines, plans to run the former BAR 007 chassis came to nought, as currently the rules forbid it.

In the end Aguri had to acquire the former Arrows A23 cars, bought from ex-Minardi boss, Paul Stoddart, who himself had acquired they from receivers after Arrows went bust prior to the start of the 2002 season. The team currently plans to use modified versions of the A23 as a stop-gap - re-named SA05 - before they introduce their own car later on in the year.

The delay with the chassis though was not the only issue and after failing to lodge the required bond with the FIA prior to the November deadline, the Super Aguri squad had to secure the approval of the other teams in the sport to compete.

While initially there was some reluctance, their rivals eventually granted them permission and the FIA rubber-stamped their entry at the end of January, once the $48 million bond had been submitted, albeit late.

The team then signed a deal to use Bridgestone tyres and at the end of February announced that they will have an all Japanese driver line-up, with Takuma Sato leading the outfit, which has largely been created so he can remain in the sport. He will be partnered by Yuji Ide, who was runner-up in the Japanese Formula Nippon Series last season.



None.jpg



SA05 Technical Specifications
Chassis Construction: Moulded carbon fibre and honeycomb composite construction incorporating front and side composite impact structures. Integral roll protection structures. Fully enclosed fuel cell.
Bodywork construction: Composite one piece sidepod and engine cover, separate carbon floor section, structural composite nose box and composite wings.
Front suspension: Wishbones, pushrod operated torsion bars and dampers. Mechanical anti-roll bar.
Rear suspension: Wishbones, pushrod operated coil springs and dampers. Mechanical anti-roll bar.
Dampers: Ohlins
Wheels: BBS
Tyres: Bridgestone
Brakes: AP Racing Calipers, Hitco material
Steering: SAF1 power assisted
Steering wheel: SAF1 specification and composite construction
Drivers seat: Driver specific carbon composite
Seat belts: Takata
Fuel cell: ATL kelvar reinforced to SAF1 specification
Battery: 2.5 Ah lead acid
Instrumentation: SAF1 specification
Transmission: SAF1 carbon composite maincase. 7 speed semi automatic electro hydraulically controlled
Clutch: Sachs

Dimensions
Front track: 1472mm
Rear track: 1422mm
Wheelbase: 3100mm
Overall length: 4666mm
Overall height: 950mm
Overall width: 1800mm

Honda RA806E
Displacement: 2.4 litres
Configuration: V8 naturally aspirated
Vee angle: 90 degrees
Maximum power: Over 700 bhp
Maximum revs: Over 19,000 rpm
Valve train: 4 valves per cylinder, pneumatic valve system
Throttle system: Electro hydraulically-operated system
Ignition system: Honda PGM-IG
Spark Plugs: NGK
 
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No 22 - Takuma Sato


Date of birth: 28/01/1977
Place of birth: Tokyo, Japan
Lives: Marlow, England
Marital status: Single
Height: 1.63m
Weight: 60kg

Driven for:
BAR (Test driver) (2001)
Jordan (2002)
BAR (Test driver (2002)
BAR (2004-2005)
Super Aguri (2006)

Website: http://www.takumasato.com/

Biography
1997 Karting champion. Wins Honda Suzuka Racing School Scholarship.
1998 Single seater debut in Formula Vauxhall championship.
1999 Sixth in EDFA Formula Opel Euroseries championship (selected rounds only). Wins Formula Asia 2000 race supporting F3 Macau Grand Prix.
2000 Third in British Formula 3 championship.
2001 Wins British Formula 3 championship with 12 race wins. Victories in Marlboro Masters of F3 at Zandvoort, the F3 International Challenge race supporting the British Grand Prix, and the Macau Grand Prix. BAR test driver.
2002 Debut Formula One season with Jordan. Scores first points with fifth place at final round in Japan.
2003 Test and third driver for BAR. Makes race debut for team in Japan after Jacques Villeneuve's early departure and finishes an impressive sixth.
2004 Largely overshadowed by team mate Button, but some strong drives nonetheless. Second on grid in Europe – best ever placing for a Japanese driver. Scores first podium at Indianapolis and finishes eighth in drivers' championship.
2005 Misses round two in Malaysia due to a viral infection. Scores just one point all season and is dropped by BAR at end of year.

Unlike most of his rivals, Takuma had his first experience of motor racing at a relatively late age. indeed as a youngster Takuma preferred racing bicycles, and eventually moved to racing karts just a few years ago.

In 1996, he scraped together what money he had to buy a kart and, the following year, entered Honda's Suzuka Racing School scholarship. He won the prize, a fully paid drive in the 1998 All-Japan Formula 3 Championship, but passed it up in order to pursue his desire of reaching Formula One, to do that he had to go to Europe.

Arriving in mid-1998, he contested a handful of Formula Vauxhall Junior races, mainly with the small Diamond Racing team, then at the end of the year graduated with Diamond to Formula Opel. In '99, his first full year of car racing, he took sixth place in the hotly contested EFDA Formula Opel Euroseries, and also competed in the last few rounds of the British F3 Championship in Class B.

Sato joined Carlin Motorsport for 2000 to compete in the F3 'A' class, winning a total of five races and taking third place in the British championship. By now he had been noticed by Grand Prix teams, and in December got his first F1 tests with Jordan and British American Racing. BAR signed him as a test driver for 2001, at which time he also became contracted to Honda.

Remaining in British F3 for 2001, Sato started the season as clear favourite for the title, with good reason. He sped to 12 wins, as well as victories in the Marlboro Masters at Zandvoort and the international F3 race supporting the British Grand Prix. Combined with his successes in 2000, Sato broke the record for wins in the British F3 Championship. He also impressed with his test outings for BAR.

Much was expected of Takuma in 2002 however, often through no fault of his own, he made his mark on F1 in quite the wrong way.

Of course having Giancarlo Fisichella as his 'benchmark' didn't help, but then neither do the statistics which record the Japanese driver as having more than his fair share of accidents. Things got off to a bad start when he collided with his team-mate on the second lap of the Malaysian GP.

After a few races, and particularly in light of the fact that Jordan had seen fit to reduce its workforce in order to cut costs, it was feared Takuma might not see out the season, especially when team boss Eddie Jordan started adding up the cost of the Japanese youngster's many crashes.

Admittedly, on several occasions Takuma was the innocent victim, most noticeably the horrendous accident in Austria involving Heidfeld and the 'misunderstanding' with Raikkonen at Monza. The manner in which the little Japanese star subsequently marched down to the McLaren pit to confront the Finn along with Ron Dennis and Norbert Haug earned him much respect.

In Japan, his home race, it all came together and Takuma took a well-earned fifth place, thus earning his employer several million in prize money.

Unfortunately it was too little too late. Although Jordan was keen to keep Takuma, it needed a driver who could bring sponsorship money to the team and with Honda now focussing on BAR the result was inevitable.

For 2003 Takuma went to BAR as reserve and test driver, indeed had he been available when Jenson Button crashed in practice for the Monaco GP, Takuma could have returned to F1 even earlier than planned.

As it is, when Takuma was unveiled as the Brackley team's second driver for 2004 and Jacques Villeneuve promptly withdrew from the final race of the season - the Japanese driver was hurriedly drafted in for a dramatic return to the cockpit. One year after taking an emotional fifth in the Jordan, Takuma brought his BAR home behind team-mate Button to give the Brackley team fifth in the Constructors' Championship.

If Jenson Button had much to prove in 2004, so too did Takuma, and though the diminutive Japanese driver didn't quite reach the dizzy heights of his teammate, he did give a pretty good account of himself.

At the end of 2004 we wrote: "What is most noticeable, certainly compared to his teammate's ultra-smooth style, is that little Takuma is all or nothing, which is a delight for race fans but a source of frustration to his employers. The Japanese driver also appears to be particularly hard on his engines, suffering a disproportionate number of failures".

And it was pretty much the same scenario in 2005. He can be a delight to watch, but he is often his own worst enemy.

Sometimes his enthusiasm costs him, particularly in qualifying, but he usually makes up for it in the race, with some very brave overtaking moves, and some very, very late braking. However, overall, his performances are hit and miss, with the emphasis on 'hit'.

That said, in 2005, Takuma was clearly not helped by the BAR's lack of pace. At Imola he performed well, while who will ever forget the sight of him colliding with Michael Schumacher at Spa?

With Barrichello signed to join BAR, as was, for 2006, it looked as though Takuma's Grand Prix career might be coming to an early end. He was too closely associated with Honda to be seriously considered by rival teams, and the Japanese driver was unwilling to accept a test driver role.

Ahead of the Japanese Grand Prix there was talk of Honda helping to create a new Japanese team which would feature Sato, but much of this was dismissed as media spin in an attempt to placate local race fans.

However, over time the rumours persisted, and finally the new team had a name, Super Aguri Formula 1, led by former F1 driver, Aguri Suzuki.

The team will start the 2005 season with the 2002 Arrows A23, with a self-penned chassis due to make its debut later in the year.

The whole project has been created from scratch in just a few months, and whatever else happens all those involved must be applauded for their determination.

Compared to the (almost) super-slick approach at Brackley, Takuma is going to find Super Aguri an altogether different prospect. Indeed in 2006 the 29-year-old really has his work cut out.

That said, if, to paraphrase Frank Sinatra, he can make it here, he can make it anywhere, Takuma could use the obvious difficulties he faces this season to his advantage.

Although we wouldn't want to see him curb his aggression too much, Takuma must learn to pay a little more respect to his car, and particularly his engine.

In Takuma, we are not witnessing World Championship winning material, however, we are seeing a great little racer, whose enthusiasm is truly infectious.

Statistics - Prior to 2006 Season
Drivers' Titles: 0
Seasons in F1: 4
Grand Prix: 51
Wins: 0
Points: 40
Poles: 0
Fastest Laps: 0

Best result in 2005: 8th (Hungary)
Best qualifying 2005: 5th (France, Italy & Japan)
Worst qualifying 2005: 19th (Australia and Brazil)
Average grid position: 10.6
2005: Out-qualified Jenson Button 1 time
2005: Completed: 783 out of 907 laps (86.33%)
2005: Finished 9 times from 15 starts (60%)


No 23 - Yuji Ide


Date of birth: 21/01/1975
Place of birth: Saitama, Japan
Lives: Japan
Marital status: Single
Height: 1.78m
Weight: 63kg

Driven for:
Super Aguri (2006)

Website: http://www.yuji-ide.com/

Biography
1994-1998 Japanese Formula 3.
1999 Formula Dream, series champion.
2000 Japanese Formula 3, runner-up.
2001 Japanese Formula 3, fifth overall. Japanese Super GT Championship.
2002 French Formula 3.
2003 Formula Nippon, seventh overall. Japanese Super GT Championship.
2004 Formula Nippon, third overall. Japanese Super GT Championship.
2005 Formula Nippon, runner-up. Japanese Super GT Championship.

When Super Aguri finally announced its 2006 driver line-up on Wednesday February 15, just days before its first official test, it came as no surprise when former Jordan and BAR driver, Takuma Sato was named.

However, the name of the second driver, caused widespread cries of "who?" followed by hasty Google searches.

Yuji first started racing Karts in 1990, aged 15, and over the next four seasons enjoyed much success in his homeland in various classes.

In 1994, the nineteen-year-old switched to single-seaters, participating in the Japanese F3 Championship. Although in Western countries, F3 is seen as a stepping-stone, and drivers will only usually spend three or four seasons, in Japan it is a little different, hence Yuji spent virtually seven seasons contesting the series, before moving to Europe and contesting the French (F3) Championship.

Ironically, Yuji never won the Japanese F3 Championship, though he finished runner-up in 2000, however, he did take time out of F3 to win the 1999 Formula Dream series.

Between 2003 and 2005, Yuji contested the Formula Nippon series in addition to taking part in the Japan GT Championship.

Formula Nippon saw him make quick progress, finishing seventh in 2003, third in 2004 and runner-up in 2005, courtesy of wins at Mine and Suzuka.

Of course, the move from Japan GP and Formula Nippon to Formula One represents a massive step, and at 31, Yuji is no 'spring chicken'.

However, it would be unfair to dismiss him out of hand, therefore let's wait and see before making any rash judgements. That said, it is unlikely, seeing as Super Aguri is coming into F1 at extremely short notice, that either the Arrows A23 - to be used in the first few races - and the team's own car, due at Imola, will really offer Yuji the opportunity to shine, no matter how talented he is.
 
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Super Aguri Test/Reserve Driver - Franck Montagny



Date of birth: 05/01/1978
Place of birth: Fleurs, France
Lives: Brignoles, France
Marital status: Single
Height: 1.82m
Weight: 70kg

Driven for:
Renault F1 (Test driver) (2003-2005)
Super Aguri(Test driver) (2006)

Webpage: http://www.fmontagny.com/

Biography
1992
1993 Karting: Ligue Cote d'Azur
1994 Formula Campus France: Champion (3 wins)
1995 F.Renault France: 4th (1 win). Rookie of the year
1996 F.Renault France: 6th (2 wins). Injured, only participated in half of the championship
1997 Formula 3 France: 4th (4 wins)
1998 Formula 3 France: 2nd (8 wins)
1998 Le Mans 24h
1999 F3000: DAMS, 12th, 6 points (1 podium)
1999 Le Mans 24h
1999 Karting: Winner of the Elf masters at Bercy
2000 F3000: DAMS, 15th, 5 points
2000 Le Mans 24h
2001 Open International Nissan: Champion
2001 Le Mans 24h: Oreca
2002 WS Nissan: Racing Engineering, 2nd, 204 points (4 wins, 10 podiums, 3 pole positions, 2 fastest laps)
2002 World Series by Nissan (3 wins, 5 podiums)
2002 Le Mans 24h: Oreca, 6th
2003 F1 Tests: Mild Seven Renault F1 Team
2003 World Series by Nissan: Champion (9 wins)
2003 F1: Mild Seven Renault F1, test driver
2004 F1 Tests: Mild Seven Renault F1 Team
2004 F1: Mild Seven Renault F1, 3rd driver
2005 F1: Jordan Grand Prix
2005 F1 Tests: Mild Seven Renault F1 Team
2006 F1 Tests: Mild Seven Renaul

Franck is another ex-Karter, indeed at 14 the young Frenchman won his country's Cadet Karting Championship and in the next two years won the National 1 Karting Championship and Formula Campus Championship.

In 1995 Franck moved up to Formula Renault, finishing fourth in the championship, the following year he remained in Formula Renault and looked set to finish runner-up in the championship until he was involved in a horrific accident at the Le Mans round. For a while it was doubtful that the French youngster would walk again, far less drive a racing car. However, outstanding work by Gerard Saillant, the surgeon who had saved Brazilian soccer star Ronaldo after serious injury, meant that Franck was back in action just six months later, even though he required crutches in order to walk. In an amazing comeback, six months after almost losing his life, the Frenchman was back on the podium, winning one of the final races of the season.

In 1997 he switched to F3 and finished a strong fourth in the French series, the following year he finished runner-up.

In 1999 he progressed to International F3000 racing with the DAMS team, but the highlight of his season was a fine win in the Elf Masters at Bercy. The following year he remained in F3000 with DAMS finishing runner-up.

In 2001 the Frenchman, now aged twenty-three, contested and won the Open Telefonica Nissan International Championship, while in 2002 he finished sixth in the Le Mans 24-hours.

Thus far Alain Prost is the only French World Champion, sadly for his fellow countrymen, none of his titles were won in a French car - though Renault powered his 1993 Championship winning Williams.

As Renault prepares for the time when it might be able to challenge WilliamsF1, McLaren and Ferrari, the French outfit is seeking out French talent to spearhead its attack. The signing of Franck Montagny at test driver, alongside Allan McNish for 2003 was seen as the first step towards an all-Gallic combination, the fact that the Frenchman was retained for 2004 as the team's sole testers, was seen as further proof of the high esteem in which Franck is held.

In 2004, Franck completed thousands of test miles for Renault, and will have felt great satisfaction at the early-season success enjoyed by his team.

For 2005, Franck was retained once again, and there is no doubt that his 2,300+ test miles played a significant in the French outfit's double title success.

However, whatever the reason, the team opted not to retain his services for 2006, though it was Franck who broke the news to his fans, revealing all on his personal website.

Speaking at the end of the year, Giancarlo Fisichella said he thought the decision to let Montagny go was a bad one, the Italian clearly feeling that the Frenchman's ability as a test driver had not been fully appreciated.

Sadly, and not for the first time, we may missed out on a unique talent, simply because he didn't have the required funding, his face didn't fit or he was in the wrong place at the wrong time.
 
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2006 Formula 1 Race Calendar

Code:
[b]Race	Date		Event				Location[/b]
1.	12/03/2006	Bahrain Grand Prix		Sakhir, Bahrain
2.	19/03/2006	Malaysian Grand Prix		Sepang - Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
3.	02/04/2006	Australian Grand Prix		Albert Park - Melbourne, Australia
4.	23/04/2006	San Marino Grand Prix		Imola, Italy
5.	07/05/2006	European Grand Prix		Nurburgring, Germany
6.	14/05/2006	Spanish Grand Prix		Barcelona, Spain
7.	28/05/2006	Monaco Grand Prix		Monaco
8.	11/06/2006	British Grand Prix		Silverstone, Britain
9.	25/06/2006	Canadian Grand Prix		Montreal, Canada
10.	02/07/2006	United States Grand Prix	Indianapolis, USA
11.	16/07/2005	French Grand Prix		Magny-Cours, France
12.	30/07/2006	German Grand Prix		Hockenheim, Germany
13.	06/08/2006	Hungarian Grand Prix		Budapest, Hungary
14.	27/08/2006	Turkish Grand Prix		Istanbul, Turkey
15.	10/09/2006	Italian Grand Prix		Monza, Italy
17.	01/10/2006	Chinese Grand Prix		Shanghai, China
16.	08/10/2006	Japanese Grand Prix		Suzuka, Japan
18.	22/10/2006	Brazilian Grand Prix		Interlagos - Sao Paulo, Brazil
 
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2006 Regulation Changes

Sporting Regulation changes for the 2006 FIA Formula One World Championship include:

Timetable

The race weekend schedule has been changed, with the two 45-minute free practice session on Saturday now being replaced by one 60-minute session which will take place at 11:00.

However, at the following events the Saturday free practice session will take place at 09:30 (Britain), 10:00 (Canada and United States).

Qualifying will take place on Saturday at 14:00, except Great Britain (12:30), Canada (13:00) and United States (13:00).

The Grands Prix will begin at 14:00, except for Bahrain (14:30), Malaysia (15:00), Great Britain (12:00), Canada (13:00), United States (13:00) and Turkey (15:00).



Revised Qualifying Format

Cars are under Parc Ferme conditions throughout qualifying.

Tyre specification must be made prior to qualifying rather than 08:00 on Saturday morning.

Qualifying One begins at 14:00 for 15 minutes and all cars will be permitted on track for fifteen minutes and have no limit on laps. At the end of the session the five slowest cars are eliminated.

The lap times of the remaining cars are deleted for the next session.

Qualifying Two follows the same format as session one and takes place between 14:20 and 14:35.

Qualifying Three, the last session, runs between 14:40 and 15:00 and the remaining ten grid positions are decided on the times in this session.

During Qualifying One and Qualifying Two fuel may be added at any time and cars eliminated in these sessions will be free to refuel at any time until the pitlane opens for the race.

Cars participating in Qualifying Three will be required to start the session with the amount of fuel they wish to start the race with.

At the end of qualifying six cars will be chosen by the FIA at random to undergo further tests.



The Grid

Last five positions will be the cars eliminated from the first qualifying session. The fastest will be in 16th position.

The next five positions will be occupied by the cars eliminated in the second qualifying session, the fastest in 11th position.

The top 10 positions will be filled with the cars which drove in Qualifying Three; the fastest will be on pole position.

If two drivers set identical times in any of the three qualifying sessions priority will be given to the one who set it first.

If one driver fails to set a time in any qualifying session they will be arranged in the following order.

Any driver who attempted a flying lap.
Any driver who failed to start a flying lap.
Any driver who failed to leave the pits in this period.
Any driver who incurs a penalty is placed behind the last car from Qualifying One.

In the above cases if more than one driver falls into a single category they will be arranged on the grid in numerical order.

Tyre use and allocation No driver may use more than one specification of dry weather tyre after the start of the qualifying practice session.

During the event no driver may use more than seven sets of dry weather tyres, four sets of wet weather tyres and three sets of extreme weather tyres.

The restriction on tyres during the race is no longer in place.



Parc Ferme Conditions

The car must be in parc ferme from the time it leaves the pit lane for the first time during qualifying until the green lights are on at the start on the formation lap.

However, teams may...

Start engines.
Add fuel and a fuel breather.
Wheels and tyres may be changed, rebalanced, and the pressure changed.
Spark plugs may be removed.
Heating devices fitted.
Jump battery fitted.
Tape added to body work.



Technical Regulation changes for the 2006 FIA Formula One World Championship include:

Engine

All engines must have 8 cylinders and be 2.4 litres, weigh no less than 95kg and have two inlet and two exhaust valves.

The centre of gravity of the engine in the car has been fixed so that the engine configuration cannot be an advantage.


Alternative Engines

For 2006 and 2007 only, the FIA reserve the right to allow any team to use an engine complying with the 2005 engine regulations.

The restrictions on this rule are that its maximum crankshaft rotational speed does not exceed a limit fixed from time to time also the air intake to the engine is restricted by the max diameter to the air box being 77mm by the FIA so as to ensure that such an engine will only be used by a team which does not have access to a competitive 2.4 litre V8 engine.


Chassis

The deflectors which used to be level with the reference plain have now been raised to the step plain.

The impact speed for the rear crash test has increased from 12 m/s to 15 m/s.
 
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Bahrain Preview: Michelin

The 57th Formula One world championship begins this weekend – and for the very first time the campaign kicks off in the Middle East.

The Bahraini Grand Prix heralds the dawn of another relentless season, with 18 three-day meetings spread across five continents and 226 days. Host circuit Sakhir is only the 13th – after Silverstone, Bremgarten, Buenos Aires, Monaco, Zandvoort, East London, Kyalami, Interlagos, Long Beach, Jacarepagua, Phoenix and Melbourne – to have staged the seasonal curtain-raiser.

This will be the third Bahraini GP – and the 751st event in the annals of the world championship. Michelin and its partner teams took a clean sweep of the top eight places in last year's corresponding fixture, with world champion-to-be Fernando Alonso heading home Jarno Trulli and Kimi Räikkönen.

The rules might have changed radically since then, with the return of V8 engines and mid- race tyre changes, but Michelin's unwavering commitment remains unaltered as it prepares to challenge for its 94th F1 grand prix victory… and defend two world titles.

Nick Shorrock, Formula One director, Michelin: "We evaluated a significant number of casings and compounds during our intensive winter test programme and learned a lot about the effect on tyres of the sport's latest rule changes. We have established that the new V8 engines require a different driving technique, which impacts on tyre performance, but have addressed this and the results have been very productive.

"This year, for the first time, we were able to conduct a pre -season test in Bahrain – and that was extremely useful. Normally, we are limited to testing in the cold of a European winter, when the weather tends to restrict the amount of useful running you can do per day. In Bahrain, however, we were able to run from nine until five – and that gave us ample opportunity to accumulate relevant data. It also confirmed that our preparations in Europe had been very astute.

"On the other hand, although the rules were changed in a bid to reduce costs, it is disappointing to note that a tyre manufacturer such as Michelin will have to carry 38 per more stock to grands prix this season than it did in 2005. Michelin is working with six F1 partners this year, rather than seven, yet finds itself having to supply more than 300 extra tyres per race weekend.

"This weekend marks the dawn of a new F1 era. It's a step into the unknown for everybody, but Michelin has prepared with its traditional attention to detail. We expect fierce competition but, as history shows, we thrive on such challenges."
 
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Bahrain Preview: Bridgestone

After a busy winter of testing with Bridgestone's five teams: Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro, Panasonic Toyota Racing, WilliamsF1, MF1 Racing and Super Aguri Formula 1; Bridgestone approaches the first round of the FIA Formula One World Championship in Bahrain with great anticipation.

Bridgestone has increased its number of teams for the 2006 season with Toyota and Williams choosing to switch to Bridgestone's Potenza Formula One tyres while Super Aguri, a new addition to the F1 paddock, has also chosen to run on Bridgestone rubber. The team's principal, Aguri Suzuki, was actually the first man to test the company's F1 tyres in 1996. This year Ferrari will be looking to avenge the loss of the championship titles while Toyota and Williams will also be pushing hard for race victories. They have had plenty of work to do ensuring their 2006 chassis run in harmony with the new tyres and they are all hungry for success. For MF1, 2006 will be an exciting season with expectations of strong performances having now made the final transition from formerly being Jordan Grand Prix. For the Super Aguri it will be an equally exciting but certainly challenging year as the team looks to establish itself for the first time in the world of Formula One.

Hiroshi Yasukawa, Director of Motorsport: "It has been a busy and exciting few months for Bridgestone: strengthening current relationships, rekindling old relationships and forging new ones. Bridgestone's technical and support staff have been working extremely hard over the winter with our five teams to meet the new challenges that lie ahead and I know they have enjoyed working with the teams and an increased number of drivers. Among these drivers there are also two F1 rookies – Nico Rosberg, who was the first ever GP2 Champion last year, and Yuji Ide. With the introduction of V8 engines, the return of pit stops and a new qualifying format we are expecting an exciting season. This is Bridgestone's tenth season in F1 and we are delghted to be here supporting the championship and inviting our guests to watch the world's premiere single- seater racing series."

Tyres for Bahrain

As a reflection of the tyre regulations this year which permit seven sets of dry tyres per driver, four sets of wet weather tyres per driver and three sets of extreme wet weather tyres per driver, and the increased number of teams running with Bridgestone in 2006, approximately 1,200 Bridgestone Potenza Formula One tyres have been sent from the Technical Centre in Kodaira City, Tokyo, to the Bahrain International Circuit this week

Season Preview

Hisao Suganuma Bridgestone Motorsport Technical Manager: "The great thing about the first round of the year is that while we have conducted thorough testing programmes throughout the winter, until you get to the first race, you just never know quite where you stand! Our preparations this winter have been extensive and we have looked at all aspects of our tyre performance to find improvements. The ability to cross reference data and run several programmes simultaneously between the teams has been extremely beneficial and we are now just looking forward to going racing. We have new tyres this year as a reflection of the new regulations which include a return to pit stop changes and a reduction in power with the V8 engines. We have been able to concentrate more on grip, speed and consistency as the tyres now have a reduced lifespan of approx 150km as opposed to 350km last year. We have achieved some very positive results with our construction development programme and as a result we have been able to return to softer compounds.

"Looking more specifically at the Bahrain race all our teams have benefited from Ferrari running at the track during the winter, giving us more realistic feedback on our development. The Sakhir circuit is a medium downforce track with long straights, several tight corners and a relatively smooth surface. It is a demanding circuit and the drivers will need to be careful how they use their tyres in the new qualifying format. In addition, the Bahrain GP has moved to the front of the calendar which means that although we may have slightly cooler temperatures than in previous years, we could still face track temperatures of around 40 degrees Celcius. It is going to be a challenging race but we are confident our teams will be competitive."
 
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