JANUARY 12, 2004
The new Sauber
The new Sauber C23 is a step back - and a step forward for the Swiss team. The C23 no longer features the "double keel" under the nose but rather depends on more conventional single keel aerodynamics developed by Willy Rampf and his team at Hinwil. According to Rampf the decision has been taken to strengthen the chassis without adding additional weight.
The centre of gravity of the new car has been lowered, largely because the team will use the same specification 2004 engine as Ferrari. This will be mated to a 2003 Ferrari gearbox. The aerodynamics of the car have been developed by Seamus Malarky and his team in the Emmen and Lola windtunnels, although the development of the car will be carried out in the new Sauber windtunnel.
The big question mark at the moment is performance of the tyres. In testing the Michelins have shown themselves to be quicker than the Bridgestone.
"At the moment the Michelins look strong over a single lap," said Giancarlo Fisichella. "Over a race distance the tyres are more equal. We have two months to fix that and I know Bridgestone is pushing hard."
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