Super Aguri finally unveil SA07 14 Mar 2007
Following a successful winter testing with an interim car, Super Aguri team principal Aguri Suzuki and race drivers Takuma Sato and Anthony Davidson revealed the teams 2007 challenger in the Formula One paddock at the Albert Park circuit in Australia on Wednesday.
The SA07 is a continuation of the development process which began in haste last year for the teams first car, the SA05. It is a result of the past eight months collaboration between the teams design department, led by chief designer Peter McCool, and engine supplier Hondas R&D centre in Tochigi, Japan.
"The winter testing period has been very good for Super Aguri F1 Team, commented Aguri Suzuki at the launch. We have been able to complete most of the things that we had planned to do, including the evaluation of the reliability of new parts for the SA07. There are many things that we were not able to do due to time and resources, but all things considered I am very happy with the car that we have here in Melbourne.
According to Super Aguri, the SA07s new homologated Honda engine is a major step forward in terms of power and reliability. It should increase the teams performance and is coupled to a new carbon gearbox from Honda, which will allow more flexibility in weight distribution and increased drivetrain integration, bringing with it the added reliability benefits.
One of the biggest challenges in the production of the SA07 has been the FIA crash tests. To pass, substantial changes had to be made to the cars nosebox design and the tests also presented the teams aerodynamicists with a hard task when it came to the rear central diffuser design. They spent a great deal of time researching ways to minimise the effect that the rear impact structure had on rear downforce. In fact, the combination of aerodynamic efficiency driven by the V8 engine formula and the introduction of control Bridgestone Potenza tyres has resulted in efficient rear downforce being a key focus for Super Aguri.
Super Aguris driver line-up for 2007 again includes experienced Japanese star Takuma Sato, who is joined by Englishman Anthony Davidson, formerly third and test driver with the Honda team.
Takuma has been with us a whole season and now understands the SAF1 Team philosophy, style and people, said Suzuki. I believe that with our new car he is going to achieve much more this year. Anthony has been with Honda Racing F1 team as a test driver for five years and brings with him a wealth of experience. Although he has only three F1 race starts under his belt, with his knowledge and experience to technically evaluate the car, I believe that he will perform well.
Around this time last year we were still struggling to get two cars onto the grid. It was our first year and everything was a new experience for the team. This year we have been able to prepare for the season and everybody is raring to go. I am very much looking forward to seeing Takuma and Anthony working together again and performing their best for SAF1 Team. We will be aiming for points from the opening race and my goal for the end of the season, which I think is a realistic one, is to have our cars in the middle of the grid. I also hope that all our fans cheer for us from the start!"