Benetton B198 Playlife
Team: Benetton Formula Ltd
Team: Nick Wirth (TD), David Richards (CEO)
Drivers: Giancarlo Fisichella (5), Alexander Wurz (6)
The B198 was launched on 15 January in London at the London Television Centre. The unveiling of the new car, the B198, coincided with the announcement of a major new technical partnership with Bridgestone, the world's largest manufacturer of tyres who are entering only their second season of F1 racing.
David Richards, Benetton's CEO said, "I want us to build consistency this year with improved results, I am hoping for success, but I am also interested in the longer term and believe we can lay down the foundations this year for a sustained success in the future."
The season got off to a decent start for Benetton with 2 consecutive second place finishes by Fisichella and later a pole position at Austria. The form however failed to continue throughout the season with the team afterwards blaming Bridgestone for favouring champions McLaren. Benetton finished the season 5th in the Constructors' Championship with 33 points.