F1 off-season runs from November to March, which is often a painstaking time for an F1 fan in the absence of their beloved sport. But petrol heads are coming out of hibernation as teams begin to launch their livery for the 2012 season.
When referring to F1 cars, “Livery” is the distinct color scheme or emblem(s) related to the team. For example (and I'm simplifying), Ferrari is red; Red Bull is blue, red and yellow; Force India is orange, white and green (mimicking the Indian flag), and so on. As with just about every aspect of F1, there are rules and regulations pertaining to the teams and their livery established by the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile ("FIA," the governing body for world motor sport). Here are the highlights:
(Reminder: Each team has two drivers. And some have test drivers. More on this later.)
-Every car must clearly display its driver's race number on the front of the car. The driver's number is published by the FIA at the beginning of the F1 season.
-The team's name or emblem must appear on the front of the nose of the car and must be "at least 25mm in its largest dimension."
-The driver's name must appear on the external bodywork of the car and also be clearly legible.
-Each car has an onboard camera, located above the principal roll structure. In order to distinguish between a team's two cars, the camera on the first car must be predominantly fluorescent red and on the second car, predominantly fluorescent yellow.
-The livery must remain unchanged on both cars for the duration of the F1 season (however, it may be altered with approval from the F1 Commission).
Now on to the fun part: Caterham F1 Team revealed their 2012 car, the CT01, late last week. It was interesting because the official release date was published as Jan. 26, however recipients of F1 Racing magazine received an early treat and images started circulating on Jan. 25. Here's the Caterham CT 01:
Side note: we tip our hats to Caterham F1 Team's website - it's clean, well-organized and easy to navigate. Cheers.
Below is the most recent information we have found regarding the other 11 team's launches.
- Red Bull Racing: Presenting the RB8 at 7:00AM CST on Monday, Feb. 6.
- Vodafone McLaren Mercedes: Presenting the MP4-27 at 5:00AM CST on Wednesday, Feb. 1.
- Scuderia Ferrari: Presenting the F12 on Wednesday, Feb. 1 at 3:30AM CST.
- Mercedes AMG Petronas: Will present their new livery during the first season testing at Jerez between Feb. 7-10.
- Lotus F1 Team: Presenting the E20 at 10:00AM CST on Sunday, Feb. 5.
- Sahara Force India F1 Team: Presenting the VJM05 at 3:00AM CST on Friday, Feb. 3.
- Sauber F1 Team: Presenting the C31 on Monday, Feb. 6 at 4:00AM CST.
- Scuderia Toro Rosso: To be announced.
- Williams F1 Team: Will present their new livery during the first season testing at Jerez between Feb. 7-10.
- Caterham F1 Team: Presented the CT01 on Jan. 25/26 via F1 Racing magazine and the internet.
- HRT F1 Team: To be announced.
- Marussia F1 Team: To be announced; early March 2012.
I thought this was interseting and would get your gears turning (pun intended): The website F1 Colours took note of this picture of Bruno Senna, the newest member of the Williams F1 Team. Are there clues in this new team shirt that will have us seeing a hint of red in their 2012 livery? I guess we'll find out soon enough.
Want all these dates in a calendar? We've got you covered. Click here to access our shared Google calendar. It includes important F1 dates such as launches and testing, 2012 F1 and MotoGP races, driver birthdays, and Austin community events that may be of interest. Check back often as we continue to update it, or just subscribe and have it populate your personal Google calendar in one click.