Today saw an unusual event in the history of F3, with the launch not only of a new team, but of a new chassis. There's nothing new in teams entering the Formula, it happens all the time, but they don't usually announce their arrival with a glitzy event, and of course they also don't usually unveil a new chassis. These days they usually go with the tried and tested Dallara which has dominated the formula for over a decade now, to the point where the casual observer could be forgiven for believing that F3 is a one make category.
Team owner Barry Walsh, Bertrand Decoster (MD of Mygale) and driver Esteban Guerrieri were all on hand to pull the cover off the elegant looking orange and black liveried 2007 Mygale chassis with which they intend to take on the might of Dallara. With a substantial budget, and an apparently serious approach, the Mercedes-powered car has already performed well in testing in the hands of the experienced Guerrieri (though the Argentinean still has to learn the British tracks), Ben Clucas who dominated Australian F3 and the find of the 2006 British series, Maro Engel, though clearly the real challenge is yet to come when the 2007 British F3 International Series gets underway at Oulton Park over the Easter Weekend.
Meanwhile, the team know they have a lot of work to do, starting with establishing who the second driver will be. They would undoubtedly like to win races this year, but are currently downplaying that prospect and saying that they just want to develop the car to its optimum level.
They have their eyes focused on getting the better of last year's dominant teams, Raikkonen Robertson Racing, and Carlin Motorsport, and although they know it won't be easy, it would only take a podium or two for the newcomers in order to start a general rush to order Mygales instead of Dallaras for the 2008 season. Team principal Simon Armstrong, and Jonny Ostrowski, who manages the team, are both learning fast about F3, having previously worked in the somewhat more rarified atmosphere of F1. This is a whole different arena for them, as well as for Mygale, and it should prove interesting watching the team and car develop over the 2007 season.