HRT F1 Team
|Based in: Caja Mágica, Madrid, Spain|
Founded: 2009 (active 2010-2012)
Team Chairman: Jose Ramon Carabantes
Team principal: Colin Kolles (2010-2011), Luis Pérez-Sala (Dec 2011-2012)
Director Business Affairs: Dr. Manfredi Ravetto
Technical director: Geoff Willis (2011)
Chief designer: Jean Claude Martens (2012)
Chief operating officer: Boris Bermes (2011)
Chief of Racing and Testing: Toni Cuquerella (2011-2012)
Campos Meta F1 is a team that has been granted participation rights in the 2010 F1 world championship as a new team. It was the first team to send to FIA the registration to the 2010 Championship.
Campos is set up in 1998 and named after former grand prix driver Adrian Campos who will run the team along side Jose Ramon Carabante.
Situated just 25 km away from the Ricardo Tormo Racing Track, the team used its 2.500 m² working area to provide services in various motorsport categories, including the Campos Racing F3 team, Mexico A1 GP and Barwa International GP2. The team has, across various championships, won six driver championships, five team championships and holds the GP2 Series 2008 title.
As part of its application to compete in the 2010 FIA Formula One World Championship, the team also agreed technical partnerships with Dallara and Xtrac. Cosworth provides the engines, just like with all the new teams in 2010. Campos got its first F1 car - internally named Campos-Dallara - homologated on 19 January and starts the 2010 season with Bruno Senna as their lead driver.
At the end of February, it was announced that majority shareholder José Ramón Carabante had taken over full control of the team from Adrián Campos, following the latter's confirmation that the team was struggling to find the necessary funding to pay Dallara, who by that time was developing the chassis. Included in the move was the return of Kolin Kolles to Formula One after he said goodbye to the sport when leaving Force India.
The team was re-named to Hispania Racing F1 Team (HRT) ahead of their first race, with the name taken from Grupo Hispania, one of Carabante's companies. The team though was formally entered as HRT as its full name was rejected by the FIA. The team's headquarters were moved from Meta Image's offices Madrid to Grupo Hispania's offices in Murcia.
On 4 March, the team confirmed Karun Chandhok as its second driver, and immediately announced that it would change its name to Hispania Racing F1 Team, although it was formally entered as HRT as its full name was rejected by the FIA.
The team's start was however difficult as HRT were the only team not to have done any pre-season testing. In its first Grand Prix the cars completed only 20 laps at Bahrain, but 2 weeks later Karun Chandhok secured the first finish of the year.
The team basically continued its struggle through the year, as it was widely known there were hardly any spare parts to save money. If something broke on the car, it usually included a wait for new parts to be brought in. The relationship with Dallara also broke off in May 2010 due to insufficient performance of the chassis.
On top of that, the team started to switch drivers, with Yamamoto taking either of the initial drivers' seats as of halfway through the season.
The best finish that year was a 14th place, hence the team had no points at the end of the season and ended last in the constructor's standings.
The next year, HRT announced to take on Karthikeyan and Liuzzi as their race drivers. Yet again however, an inseason driver change was deemed necessary as Red Bull protege Daniel Ricciardo took Karthikeyan's place as of the GP of Great-Britain. And also once more, the team scored no championship points and didn't finish any better than 3 times on 17th position.
On 4 July 2011, it was announced that Thesan Capital, a Madrid-based investment company purchased a controlling stake in the team from owner Jose Ramon Carabante. In November, as part of the team's intention to present itself more as a fully Spanish team, Pedro de la Rosa was signed on a two-year race contract. One month later, Colin Kolles was dropped as team principal and replaced by former Spanish F1 driver Luis Pérez-Sala.
At the beginning of 2012, while the team was preparing to move its operations to the Caja Mágica complex in Madrid, news emerged that the team was delayed with its car. When it later also repeatedly failed some mandatory crash tests the team could not enter its new HRT F112 during winter tests and, just like in 2011, failed to qualify in the first GP of the year, at Melbourne. Things hardly improved throughout the season, with qualification at all remaining races, but never with a remote chance of points.
Continued financial struggles led to an announcement from the owners in November 2012 that they were looking to sell the team. When that attempt ultimately failed before the deadline of 30 November, the team was subsequently omitted from the 2013 entry list. The team subsequently also went into liquidation, with carbon fibre supplier Formtech being one of the companies that HRT owed money to.
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