Sauber to present C23 tonight

SAUBER PETRONAS present C23 and two new sponsors Salzburg/Hinwil - 12 January 2004 - Today, SAUBER PETRONAS are presenting the new C23 racing car and two new sponsors, "Sokhna Port" and "Tai Kang Life", to international media representatives at...

SAUBER PETRONAS present C23 and two new sponsors

Salzburg/Hinwil - 12 January 2004 - Today, SAUBER PETRONAS are presenting the new C23 racing car and two new sponsors, "Sokhna Port" and "Tai Kang Life", to international media representatives at Red Bull's Hangar-7, Salzburg Airport. Team Principal Peter Sauber and the two drivers, Giancarlo Fisichella (30) and Felipe Massa (22), are looking towards the upcoming season with confidence. "Our goal for 2004 is to clearly increase our performance. How well we'll be able to do this primarily depends on how quickly we'll be able to translate the results of our wind tunnel work to the race track," Peter Sauber said, adding that, "Certainly, the presence of seven automotive manufacturers has made the competition in Formula One fiercer than ever, but we're ready to accept this challenge."

The reason for the launch of the new SAUBER PETRONAS C23 being staged at Red Bull's Hangar-7 at Salzburg Airport is a special anniversary: The partnership and friendship between the Austrian energy drink producer, Red Bull, and Sauber is entering its tenth year in the 2004 season.

For the design of the new SAUBER PETRONAS C23 Technical Director Willy Rampf chose a pragmatic approach, developing a car with a good basis as well as plenty of potential for continued development. "Owing to the fact that we will not be able to start working in our new wind tunnel until after the roll-out of the C23, this solution made sense to us more than any other." Thanks to engine supplier PETRONAS Sauber, for the first time, will be receiving the same type of engine as Ferrari. For the first time, as well, the Swiss team will be using Ferrari's seven-speed gearbox.

Giancarlo Fisichella is looking forward to the roll-out of the C23 with eager anticipation: "Day after tomorrow, on Wednesday, I'll be able to drive the new car for the first time at Valencia. I take the fact that this date coincides with my 31st birthday as a good omen." Having just returned to Team SAUBER PETRONAS, Felipe Massa is optimistic, as well: "I've learnt a lot during my year as a Ferrari test driver and am ready, now, to apply this knowledge to the race track."

On the sponsoring side, Team Principal Peter Sauber was able to announce good news, too, as the team has just gained two new partners: "Sokhna Port" and "Tai Kang Life".

Sokhna Port with its ultra-modern logistics centre is strategically located on the coast of the Red Sea at the Gulf of Suez, 130 km east of Cairo. The port was inaugurated in 2002 and makes use of the latest state-of-the-art IT technologies, ensuring the smooth transit of containerised and bulk cargoes. The project has a long-range focus and is intended to make Sokhna Port an international hub for warehousing and distribution of goods. Sokhna Port's management plan to use Formula One and SAUBER PETRONAS' contacts particularly in the B2B area. Sokhna Port's logo is placed on the front nose of the SAUBER PETRONAS racers.

Tai Kang Life is one of China's six leading life insurance companies holding a national licence. In June 2003, the company's total assets amounted to 2.67 billion U.S. dollars, with income from insurance premiums at 2.12 billion. Tai Kang Life has achieved triple digit growth rates in two consecutive years, reflected by a significant increase in market share. Tai Kang Life's logos are placed on the car's rear view mirrors.

"I'm delighted that, with Sokhna Port and Tai Kang Life, we've been able to gain two new partners. Only thanks to our strong and loyal sponsors are we able to pursue a forward-looking strategy as an independent team," Peter Sauber said, commenting on the new partnerships.

The actual unveiling of the SAUBER PETRONAS C23 will take place tonight, starting at 6.30 p.m. (CET), during a show at Red Bull's Hangar-7 at Salzburg Airport, featuring a special performance by the "Sugababes" from the UK as a highlight of the evening. Starting at 6.30 p.m., a live broadcast of the show can be watched by visiting either of the following three websites: www.sauber-petronas.com, www.redbull.com, www.hangar-7.com.

-sauber-

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Giancarlo Fisichella , Felipe Massa , Peter Sauber
Teams Ferrari , Sauber