Sidepodcast // All for F1 and F1 for all

They're back and this time it's personal // Ross Brawn takes ownership of the ex-Honda Racing F1 team

Published by Christine

By now, you will have heard that Honda Racing is reborn as Brawn GP, with Ross taking the helm and leading a triumphant return. Well, perhaps that remains to be seen, but for now, we are all glad to see the three B's - Button, Barrichello and Brawn - remain in F1, no matter how many question marks hang over the car.

The team sported a new livery as they took to the track for a shakedown today. It's green go-faster stripe appearance matches that of the hastily put together website. We're all hoping it won't last till the racing begins, but then again, I've seen worse.

The BGP 001 was under the expert guidance of Button, with Rubens on hand to evaluate his performance, and Brawn there to oversee them all. Afterwards, Ross released an interview that gave us an insight how they have brought the team back from the brink of extinction.

Firstly, and most importantly, he says the future of the team has been secured. There is no doubt, no pondering over whether they will last four months. He is confident they are saved, and therefore, so am I. Brawn confirms that he has purchased the team from Honda and is the sole owner (hence the name!), and he is proud of all the people he can now call his employees.

There is no denying this has been a difficult time for everyone at our Brackley base, but I am immensely proud of the great spirit and fortitude that I have witnessed in the factory over the course of the past few months. The process of designing and manufacturing our new car, which has continued concurrent with the efforts being made to secure the team, has been reasonably straightforward. That is particularly pleasing given that our car was designed around a different engine and both the chassis and gearbox have been modified to accommodate the new engine.

Regarding the drivers, Brawn simply wanted to be able to "hit the ground running" and it's no wonder. Time is tight now, and there are just two short tests left in Barcelona and Jerez, before the season gets going. The drivers have a good working relationship, both have plenty of experience, and it seems a sensible option to retain a known environment amidst so much change. Brawn isn't phased by the prospect of having so little track time under the team's collective belt.

The biggest hurdle we faced was being in a position to race in Melbourne and we will now be able to achieve that target. Initially we may experience some reliability issues resulting from the lack of track testing but we feel we have a good car and we hope that our performance will be respectable. We are confident in the fundamental design principle of our car and look forward to the opportunity to develop it further as the season progresses.

Finally, and as all good things should, we return to the livery. It's not pretty, but my biggest complaint is that it's white. In fact, it is predominantly white. Brawn says it is supposed to reflect simplicity, and to parallell their current position - being brand new. I don't see why simplicity couldn't be purple or dark green, but perhaps this means as the team gets more confident, the colours will change.

Brawn's final words: "It’s very different to any other car on the grid."

Maybe, maybe not. Most importantly though, it will be on the grid.