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Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Audi’s accelerated F1 takeover a lift for brief time period

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The German producer will arrive on the grid in 2026 with a works engine and chassis programme after initially shopping for a 25% stake in Sauber Motorsport early final yr.

There was hypothesis that Audi would cease at a 75% funding, which might be signed off a lot nearer to 2026, however it has as an alternative accelerated plans and voted for a full takeover.

Whereas this shores up the Swiss squad’s long-term future, it’s going to nonetheless present a short-term enhance, in line with Sauber’s F1 head of trackside engineering Xevi Pujolar.

For certain, it’s encouraging for the long run,” he stated. “But in addition, we’d like to consider right now, no?”

The Spanish former Jaguar, Williams and Toro Rosso staffer reckons Audi’s monetary injection will assist the chassis operation construct up over the following two seasons.

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He continued: “I’d say it will be important when it comes to finances potentialities, and what we are able to construct within the subsequent yr and a half or two years earlier than Audi [arrives] totally and we’re Audi.

“So, simply to have the group prepared, and we simply have to do as a lot as we are able to now to construct that group to be prepared when it issues.

“However in that point, we wish to nonetheless be aggressive, and we wish to combat for the factors each single race.

Xevi Pujolar, Head of Trackside Engineering, Stake F1 Group

Picture by: Andy Hone / Motorsport Images

“I’ll say that, even with all the problems that we’ve got received, that offers us power, and a Positive mindset that what’s coming is healthier and there’s a mild on the finish of the tunnel simply to guarantee that we’re profitable.

“That is what we wish to do. To achieve success.”

Then branded as Alfa Romeo, Sauber completed ninth within the 2023 constructors’ championship, having misplaced its early ground-effect period benefit that got here with complying with the minimal weight restrict from the beginning of the brand new guidelines cycle, not like rivals.

Audi’s affirmation of an accelerated Sauber buy has alleviated hypothesis that the agency was getting chilly ft over its F1 programme. This adopted the replacement of CEO Markus Duesmann with Gernot Dollner, who is alleged to be extra sceptical over an entry.

As a part of Audi’s dedication, it has put in former chief growth officer Oliver Hoffmann because the chair of all Sauber firms. Ex-McLaren group principal Andreas Seidl has additionally been appointed CEO of the Audi F1 group.

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