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GP Week : Issue 52
>>F1 INSIGHT given up on any hope of returning to Formula 1. When this opportunity arose, we jumped at it with enthusiasm. In this world you don’t get two opportunities like this. Looking towards 2010, how much of what you have learned in IRL / GP2 will you be able to use in your F1 project? With IRL and GP2 we have greatly deepened our knowledge, especially in performance, safety and vehicle dynamics. We are aware that F1 is more refined and takes more efforts. How far along are you with the 2010 design? We have started designing three months ago. We took the risk with Campos that if our entry was not accepted we would throw away three months of work. We took this decision because we decided it would be nearly impossible to design and produce an F1 car in the short time from June until the 2010 season. How much is the current confusion over 2010 holding you back? We are continuing as if nothing had happened. There is current confusion over the 2010 regulations, no matter what happens politically. We’re currently unsure over 4WD, refuelling, tyre warmers, KERS, etc. So where do you start? How can you start when you don’t know what the rules are? Our car will be 2WD without the possibility to refuel and without KERS. We have worked on 2009 specification adding the extra fuel capacity required for 2010. We have very clear plans about the design of our car and we are aware of what is possible within our limited budget. You’ll be designing the car around the 2006 spec Cosworth engine – how much does it help that you’ll know all of its dimensions already? We have had the engine dimension for some time and this has helped us enormously in designing the engine to chassis interface and engine to gearbox interface. When do you hope to have your first design finished? The design of the racing car never finishes, however, we plan to have the initial designs ready in October in order to have our first tests in January 2010. How will the testing ban hold you back? We would have liked to test in 2009 but we will not be ready in time. Finally, how happy are you to be coming back to Formula 1, and what are your hopes for 2010? Yes, we are extremely happy to be returning to F1 but we are also aware of the difficulties involved. We hope to be the fastest of the new entries and to improve our competitiveness through our season. 25