The HRT team have opted not to participate in the up-coming test at Mugello next week, but are instead concentrating their focus on moving headquarters to Madrid in Spain. But they will bring some updates for the Spanish Grand Prix.
It is a well-known fact that HRT is the smallest team on the grid, and the financial difficulties are also a subject to much debate. It was rather surprising to read that the team did not wish to participate in the test at Mugello, from May 1 to May 3, but in the few statements that actually do emanates from the team, they deny that financial issues is the main reason to miss the test.
Instead if testing along with the other teams, they believe that the time spent in the factory, will give a bigger boost in performance than actually testing. And for the fifth round of the championship, the Spanish Grand Prix up next, they will bring some updates, says Pedro de la Rosa.
“I think now we have some time to go back to base, and when I say base, it is our new base, which is important because finally we have our home,” de la Rosa said.
“We need to still develop the car, but we can now spend time in the wind tunnel, and spend time optimising the set-up. We know our weaknesses, and these few races have been like the pre-season for us. We were three months too late and have been paying the price for that.
“I think we have a solid structure underneath us now, and the result in Bahrain was an unexpected bonus because nobody was expecting us to out-qualify a Marussia or finish races like in Malaysia.
“I am looking forward to the rest of the season, because we have more time to develop what is a solid platform. We have to improve, but we have the people and the factory now.
“There is stability that we didn’t have a few months ago – or even a few weeks ago. It is a new start – now we can say we are starting properly.”
The idea of testing at Mugello, is of course to test the new updates the teams are bringing, and since HRT doesn´t have the updates ready until after the test is complete, there is no point in going, says Narain Karthikeyan.
“We are one of the smallest teams in the paddock and our aim is to close the gap to Marussia and the other teams immediately in front of us,” said Karthikeyan.
“We would have had nothing new to test in Mugello as the upgrades to the car will only be ready by the Spanish GP a week later. So hopefully, we can keep improving the car and by the time the Indian GP rolls around in October, we should be a bit more competitive.”