by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
GP Week : Issue 148
Now that they’ve got their feet under the table, HRT’s new owners are doing what they can to bring stability to the Spanish racers. The Spanish team has undergone numerous changes since its inception, but recent months have seen a revolution at HRT, with new investment, a change of leadership, and the departure of former team principal Colin Kolles. While HRT got off to a shaky start in 2012, skipping testing because the car had not passed all its crash tests in time, then failing to qualify for the season-opening race in Melbourne, Malaysia showed a dramatic improvement. But in order to maintain its upward trajectory, it was clear that HRT needed a technical director, the role having been left vacant since Geoff Willis left last September. Toni Cuquerella has been promoted to the role from inside the team, where he was working as an engineer. “Toni Cuquerella has been a key figure in the team since its inception and, above all, in this new stage,” said HRT team principal Luis Pérez-Sala. “The transition from the previous project to this one hasn’t been easy and a lot of work has been carried out that without vital figures such as him wouldn’t have been possible. “The position of technical director was vacant and the development of the F112 was carried out at the technical office in Munich. But now, with the car already on the track, it was important to take control and count on someone influential at the head of the technical office. And because of his experience, judgment and knowledge, Toni’s profile fitted in perfectly.” In related news, HRT have announced that Ma Qing Hua has been selected to join their driver development programme. While the timing of a Chinese driver announcement in the run-up to the Chinese Grand Prix was obviously designed to get maximum publicity for the team, Hua’s previous form indicates that he is handy behind the wheel. “I’m very honoured to form a part of the driver development programme at HRT Formula 1 Team since, with work and effort, it will allow me to become the first Chinese Formula 1 driver,” Hua said. “It’s a very special moment for me and it’s hard to express how happy I am. I’ve dreamt of becoming a Formula 1 driver since I was very small. I started in the karting world when I was 8 years old and I worked really hard to learn and become quicker every time. “After competing in categories such as Formula campus, Formula Renault and F3, I learned a lot about car set-up, technique on circuits and team work to become more professional every time. And now finally my childhood dream has become true thanks to the opportunity that HRT has granted me to become an F1 driver.” HRT ARE HIRING – new technical director, new young driver BRIEFLY » While much is being made of the probable return of the French Grand Prix to Paul Ricard in the not-too- distant future, Magny-Cours has nominated itself as a possible candidate to host the race. Serge Saulnier, who runs Magny-Cours, is pushing to have his circuit considered. “We are candidates for the French GP,” French newspaper L’Equipe quote Saulnier as saying. “I am surprised that the ministerial group in charge of this project considers Paul Ricard to be the only option. In fact we have never been taken into consideration, never been listened to or met with.” Since Magny-Cours hosted its last grand prix access to the track has been improved, but there is still a dearth of nearby facilities for the circus to play in. » Red Bull chief technical officer Adrian Newey was honoured with an OBE last week for his services to motorsport. The Queen appointed Newey an Officer of the Order of the British Empire at Windsor Castle on Tuesday. “It’s funny, I’m not very good at thinking about these things until I actually get there, as I tend to live in the present, so it was only really when I sat down having received it and waited to meet my family again that I thought, this is amazing,” Newey told the Red Bull website after the event. “I very clearly remember getting to the end of my first month at Fittipaldi’s, the first team I worked for, and, on receiving my salary for the month, thinking ‘This is amazing, I’m actually being paid for a job that I love doing – I don’t think I’m very good at it and they haven’t even rumbled I’m not good at it yet!’ So, to be sitting there receiving an award from the Queen 30-odd years later was an amazing experience.” HRT bring Ma Qing Hua to their driver development programme 8 GPWEEK.com // PARTNERS: F1 >>> NEWS