Ferrari have managed to acquire a new sponsor for their team for the 2009 season, interestingly the company joining the logos on the F2009 is a car manufacturer. Despite all the clouds hanging over the motor industry at the moment, Indian car-maker Tata seem happy enough to spend some money for an association with Italy’s most famous of automobile brands. It is the first time an Indian company will adorn the flanks of a Ferrari Formula One car.
However, not everything is rosy at Maranello, the team once again suggesting they are way behind in the development of their KERS package. From 2009, the Kinetic Energy Recovery System will be allowed on the machines, giving the drivers a boost of power at the press of a button. However, while Williams and BMW seem to be on top of KERS and have been running a system of sorts for a few months now, Ferrari are behind and are putting together a contingency plan in case it isn’t ready by next March.
The objective is to arrive at the first race with a functioning and competitive KERS, but we also have a B plan: not a different car but a version without KERS. Aldo Costa.
We are late with the KERS. We prepared a hybrid F1 car to test it, but the system isn’t ready. In February we’ll understand how to go to the first grand prix. Gilles Simon.
If Ferrari cannot get their KERS device up to speed before the Australian Grand Prix, the team could suffer immeasurably. Ross Brawn has hinted in the past (before Honda pulled the plug) that although drivers cannot activate the device until a certain speed is reached, cars without KERS will suffer approaching the first corner of the first lap of races.