Racing Point has become the sixth team to announce when the wraps will come off its 2020 contender.
Of the six teams that have announced their dates thus far, the Silverstone-based outfit is currently set to be the last team to reveal all, the RP20 to be unveiled at sponsor BWT’s HQ in Mondsee, Austria, just two days before testing gets underway at Barcelona.
Last year, as the team recovered from the years of Mallya misery, it began with what technical director Andy Green described as a “vanilla car”.
“We did what we needed to get the car out for launch,” he subsequently told reporters, “but in the background we have always been working on the car for the first race, trying to find the maximum performance we can and bring to Melbourne.”
After scoring points in each of the four opening rounds, the team essentially disappeared into obscurity, encountering one anonymous race after another, and while Perez experienced the longest points drought of his F1 career – going 8 races without scoring – the mayhem of the Nurburgring saw teammate Stroll score an impressive 4th.
Ironically, it was in Germany that the team introduced its first significant upgrade, not that race day’s difficult conditions allowed it to shine.
In the races that followed further upgrades appeared, allowing Perez to begin a run of nine races in which he scored points in eight, while Stroll added to his tally in Belgium and Japan.
If the pre-season car was vanilla, by Singapore we had Haagen-Dazs, what with so many changes. First there were the sidepods, then the cooling package, then came the front suspension and front wing.
However, one area where the team was sadly lacking all season was qualifying, with Perez only making it to Q3 on four occasions and Stroll once. On average the Mexican qualified around 13th while his teammate was around 16th.
While some determined drives, decent strategy and some particularly strong starts – especially from Stroll – helped out on race day, the team’s poor qualifying performance on Saturday’s meant the pair were always up against it come race day.
As Lawrence Stroll’s investment kicks in, and the team benefits form the new resources this will bring, it is hoped that the Silverstone-based outfit can begin punching above its weight in the same manner as its predecessor.