THE NEW SEASON IS AROUND THE CORNER! Dear Friends, The new season is around the corner and we are getting ready to face it in the best way. Obviously I am using the plural to include all the guys of my team, BMW Team Italy-Spain. There are a...
THE NEW SEASON IS AROUND THE CORNER!
The new season is around the corner and we are getting ready to face it in the best way. Obviously I am using the plural to include all the guys of my team, BMW Team Italy-Spain.
There are a few new things: I will have a new team-mate, Sergio Hernandez, I am happy for his arrival even if I am sorry that Felix Porteiro will not be with us, since he became, and still will be, a friend. Sergio, proved to be very friendly as well as a very good driver since the beginning and I am pretty sure that we will work well together.
From a more personal level, the new season will see me using the sequential gearbox instead of the H one that I used so far. In the first tests done at Portimao we had the chance to verify that all the technical benefits of this solution are well balanced by the 30Kg added ballast imposed by rule to everyone using it. In fact, lap times with and without the system have been virtually the same.
This said, I am pretty sure that the sequential solution, making easier the drive, will allow me to recover part of those disadvantages that my condition objectively forces on me. An example? Well, with the 5 speed gearbox it is allowed to change only the conic couple to have longer rations. At Macau one reaches the highest speed of the whole championship, but the hairpin is the narrowest too. With a first gear unavoidably long, my brand mates use the clutch to help the engine getting more revs, but I have to do thousands of other things with my hands (despite all the devices that we designed over time) and therefore I cannot be as efficient and every year I am losing 3-4 tenths in that part of the track. With the sequential gearbox, I will have a shorter first gear and I will not need to use the clutch. In this way, at least that problem is solved.
As mentioned, we have already been at Portimao for some testing, but the bad weather conditions spoiled our work. Next week we will be at Valencia for three more testing days and, provided the Spanish sun will be among us, I am pretty sure that we will carry home tons of interesting data.
In Spain we will also take the first official pictures of 2009 whereby the new livery of our cars will be uncovered. the good old Brojanigo will take care of adding them to the website straight away.
Goodbye and see you soon,