Alpha Tauri has been one of the teams that has surprised us the most in this 2020 Formula 1 season. The Italian team achieved its second victory in its history at the last Italian Grand Prix in Monza. It was an extremely impressive achievement as its last victory was also at that same circuit but in 2008 with Sebastian Vettel behind the wheel, when the team was called “Toro Rosso”. This victory has been a boost for the team that is led by Franz Tost. Regarding their car, Alpha Tauri has been below Renault, McLaren, Racing Point and Ferrari in some races in terms of performance, this may be because they are the last team that continues operating with a 50% wind tunnel of the real size, while all his rivals have a 60% as allowed by the FIA. Its wind tunnel is in Bicester and currently, the Italian team has more than 100 engineers working in this aerodynamics department.
As we already know, the FIA will implement some changes from 2022 and the teams will start preparing from next year. The new changes consist of changing the structure of the aerodynamic R&D programs to have them ready in the 2022 season, these changes made the Red Bull Racing wind tunnel have free space, which was advantageous for Alpha Tauri and the Italians they will use this same tunnel from that year onwards. It is well known that Alpha Tauri is the sister team of Red Bull, however, before the Italians were classified as the junior team of Red Bull, sharing the wind tunnel is part of the process of changing from being a junior team to a sister team, this was what Christian Horner, Red Bull Racing Team Principal, commented.
“Obviously Alpha Tauri is a rebranded team for this year. I think their aspirations are beyond where Toro Rosso’s were.” Red Bull’s team principal commented. “We have a synergy project within the regulation. For example, the sharing of the wind tunnel will happen for the first time next year, which makes complete sense from a financial perspective. That’s what I was referring too.”
There’s gotta be Fall Guys installed on here somewhere... pic.twitter.com/bxrbCTJIhp— Scuderia AlphaTauri (@AlphaTauriF1) September 17, 2020
“The tools that we are using, the model size, Alpha Tauri will be utilising the same equipment, the same tunnel, and of course that will hopefully be helpful to them in their development, particularly with the ’22 car being such a significant change.” He commented. “The regulations are now clear, the grey zones have been taken out in terms of what is and what isn’t allowed, and hopefully Alpha Tauri will now benefit from that.”
“Currently we are the only team using a 50% wind tunnel and Bedford [Red Bull’s wind tunnel] is 60%. Which obviously will bring us an advantage because you can make much more valid measurements.” Said Alpha Tauri’s team principal, Franz Tost.
“I think that the team has grown up in the last years. We showed a better performance, the car is more reliable, the co-operation with Red Bull Technology is very positive, the synergy process brings us a lot of advantages, everything within the regulations.” He commented regarding the process of becoming Red Bull’s sister team. “We are the brand ambassador to Alpha Tauri, and therefore, we have to show a good performance, we have to be there, because otherwise it doesn’t make sense for Alpha Tauri to be in F1.”
This new move by Red Bull and Alpha Tauri can make the battle in the mid-field tighten even more since Alpha Tauri is considered a strong team but not on all tracks, as is usually the case with Racing Point and McLaren. Pirelli will also capitalize on this move as now all teams will have a 60% scale car, making the task of designing and manufacturing the tires easier.