AlphaTauri reveals 2021 racer

Scuderia AlphaTauri become the the second Formula 1 outfit to revealed their Honda-powered race car for the upcoming season.

After a successful 2020 season in which Pierre Gasly returned to the Faenza-based team to the top step of the podium by winning the Italian Grand Prix.

Gasly is staying on for this year, but will have a new teammate as Japanese rookie Yuki Tsunoda is stepping up from Formula 2 as replacement for Daniil Kvyat.

The AT02 is an evolution of last year’s car, but the team has made a big aerodynamic push to try to find improvements as it has also been forced to respond to regulations changes in the floor and brake duct area.

Technical director Jody Egginton has said that although the chassis is a carryover from last year, the overall package has undergone a lot of improvement.

“The work which has been undertaken to develop our car for 2021 goes far beyond compliance with regulation changes,” he said.

“It has involved changes to nearly all aero surfaces and also development and repackaging large parts of the car, which are hidden, in order to achieve these changes.

“We have spent a lot of time working to recover the aero losses as a result of the regulation changes, while also focusing on increasing and improving the car’s aerodynamic operating window.

“This activity will continue into the season, with the split of resource between the 2021 and 2022 projects reviewed and adjusted as required to maximise the potential of both projects.”

Although Formula 1’s rules allowed AlphaTauri to upgrade its suspension to Red Bull’s 2020 specification, the team decided to keep with the version it ran last season.

It has however used two development tokens for a new nose, and has redesigned the outboard front suspension – which has triggered some updating of steering components to those used by Red Bull Racing last year.

AlphaTauri is sticking with Honda engines for the Japanese car manufacturer’s final season in the sport, and will then move to Red Bull power units like its sister team from 2022.

The dark livery looks fantastic and best wishes to the AlphaTauri in achieving the highs like Pierre Gasly’s incredible win at Monza.

5 thoughts to “AlphaTauri reveals 2021 racer”

  1. Pierre Gasly feels he is ready to be AlphaTauri’s team leader in Formula 1 this year, taking on greater responsibility with the arrival of new teammate Yuki Tsunoda.

    Gasly scored his breakthrough maiden F1 victory at the Italian Grand Prix last year, helping AlphaTauri to the biggest points total in the squad’s history.

    The Frenchman will be joined at the team this year by F2 graduate Tsunoda, who replaces Daniil Kvyat.

    Although Tsunoda has completed private running in some of the team’s older car models to get up to speed, he will get just one-and-a-half days in the new car before his rookie season begins.

    Speaking upon the launch of the new AlphaTauri AT02 car for 2021, Gasly acknowledged that the arrival of Tsunoda meant he would need to step up as team leader more, but felt prepared to do so.

    “Of course, Yuki’s arrival means I will have more responsibility within the team and I’m ready to take on the role of team leader,” Gasly said.

    “However, he is a very quick driver and he will help us move the team forward. I know Yuki, he is a competitive guy and showed what he can do in F2, that’s why he was promoted to F1 after just one year. We will work together to achieve that.

    “He lacks experience, so it won’t always be easy for him, but I think he is talented and it will also be up to me and the team to lead the way.

    “His arrival doesn’t really change my approach, which will be the same as last year, when we got the most out of what we had to work with at pretty much all the grands prix, apart from one or two.

    “We must keep going with the same philosophy, as I really believe last year was the team’s best in terms of the way it worked, the development, the performance and in the way it managed the race weekends.

    “That goes for me too, and we just have keep going like this to try and do a little bit better than we did last year.”

    AlphaTauri F1 chief Franz Tost expressed his confidence in Gasly to step up as team leader in 2021, believing him to be one of the best drivers on the grid.

    “I reckon Pierre is one of the strongest drivers in F1 nowadays,” said Tost.

    “Pierre’s good technical understanding allows him to get the best out of the car. Pierre has been with the team for some time now, so he is familiar with all procedures and with our way of working.

    “He will be a good leader, helping Yuki in his development. He knows how to win a race – as he proved last year in Monza – and if we provide him with a competitive car, I expect him to be very successful this season.

    “With Pierre on Yuki’s side we have an experienced driver, who can help our Japanese rookie to develop faster, but at the same time we can aim for good results.”


  2. Yuki Tsunoda says he is “excited to learn everything I can” from AlphaTauri team mate Pierre Gasly, as he prepares to embark on his maiden Formula 1 campaign.

    The 20-year-old Red Bull and Honda-backed driver got his call up after an impressive Formula 2 campaign, and in replacing Daniil Kvyat, becomes the first Japanese driver in F1 since Kamui Kobayashi in 2014.

    AlphaTauri have done their best to get him up to speed, running him in last year’s car at the post-season Abu Dhabi test, as well as three runs in old machinery at Imola and Misano – but he knows it’ll be a steep learning curve and is prepared to learn all he can from Gasly, who took his maiden race win at Monza last year.

    “Pierre is really fast and already has a win under his belt in F1,” said Tsunoda on the day AlphaTauri launched their 2021 challenger, the AT02. “The first target for every driver is to beat your team mate but he will be a hard one to beat.

    “I remember seeing him in Japan when he was racing in Super Formula and I was in Formula 4. He nearly got the title in his first year in Japan which is really difficult, especially for a European driver. He’s an incredible talent and I’m excited to learn everything I can from him this season, as I’ve already seen how integrated he is within the team.”

    Tsunoda has been on a trajectory for F1 for less than two years, culminating in third overall in his first F2 campaign in 2020 – and he says he can’t wait to get started, describing his role as a Formula 1 driver as an “honour”.

    “I’m really excited to get started and am particularly looking forward to racing in Suzuka, in front of the Japanese fans,” he said. “The last time I raced in Suzuka was in Formula 4, so it will be a big difference, but I’m really excited to now get the opportunity to represent my country in F1.

    “I am also looking forward to visiting many new countries and racing on different tracks. If I had to pick one of the circuits I’m most looking forward to, apart from Japan, it would be Monaco – there is so much history there and it’s a very challenging circuit.

    “The biggest thing for me though, will be lining up on the grid with so many superstars of the sport – it’s an absolute honour to be competing against some of the greatest drivers in the world.”


  3. AlphaTauri used a combination of development tokens and parts from last year’s Red Bull to overhaul the front end of its new car for the 2021 F1 season.

    As a cost-saving measure, Formula 1 teams have been restricted in how they may upgrade their cars for the new season. A system of token was introduced in order to limit what parts they can upgrade.

    However teams like AlphaTauri, which sources parts from Red Bull, also had the option of upgrading to the 2020-specification parts used by their supplier teams. While AlphaTauri decided against adopting Red Bull’s 2020 rear suspension and gearbox, it has incorporated some parts from the front end of the RB16.

    “We have elected to carry over the safety cell,” explained technical director Jody Egginton. “We believe the chassis and power unit provides a good baseline, so we are happy to have spent our tokens elsewhere for 2021.”

    “The use of Red Bull Technologies-supplied gearbox, rear suspension and some front suspension components is now in its third year for us but for 2021 we have elected to continue with the same rear suspension and gearbox design as we used in 2020,” he added.

    “We’ve elected to use our two tokens for a new nose and also redesigned the outboard front suspension, as a result of this we have elected to update some Red Bull Technology supplied steering components to 2020 specification, as permitted by the technical regulations.”

    he 2021 technical rules also specify aerodynamic changes, including a reduction of the rear floor dimensions, which are intended to reduce how much downforce the cars generate.

    “The headline aero numbers have been affected by the aero change, but we have been working really hard to recover the lost performance and also improve the aerodynamic operating window for the car,” said Egginton.

    “How fast will our car be? It’s not something I would want to put an exact number to just yet. Overall, taking everything into account, I would say we will probably see a performance level similar to that seen mid-2020.”

    The AT02 will also benefit from an upgraded power unit supplied by Honda. The manufacturer will leave Formula 1 at the end of the season.

    “Effectively, Honda is giving us a new power unit for this year and have taken the opportunity to develop the packaging around it,” said Egginton. “Honda is very determined to push right to the end of 2021 and we are sure the power unit will continue to provide all that is required from it.”


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