Alfa Romeo and Sauber Motorsport have announced that they will continue their partnership to compete in the 2021 FIA Formula One World Championship season.
Ahead of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, Alfa Romeo has confirmed that it would remain in the championship after extending its partnership with Sauber that gives it naming rights of the team. The extension of their current contract means that Alfa Romeo and Sauber Motorsport will continue their journey together until at least the end of the current era of Formula One regulations.
The Italian marque that secured the first two Formula One Drivers’ Championship titles in 1950 and 1951 returned to the sport in 2018 after an absence of more than 30 years in 2018 as part of a technical and commercial deal with Sauber Motorsport.
The partnership between the two parties extends beyond its activities in F1. Sauber Engineering, a branch of the Sauber Group, was involved in the design, development and manufacturing of Alfa Romeo’s new Giulia GTA and GTAm models, with team drivers Kimi Räikkönen and Antonio Giovinazzi test-driving the cars at Alfa Romeo’s development track in Balocco, Italy, and providing the marque’s engineers with technical feedback to fine-tunes the vehicles.
The initial three-year contract expires at the end of the 2020 season and the parties have now agreed to extend it by a further year. To celebrate the contract extension, Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN will sport a special, one-off livery emblazoned with the Italian flag on the top of the roll-hoop and on the rear wing endplates – a tribute to Italy and to Alfa Romeo’s unique racing heritage in the year of its 110th birthday.
The journey continues: Alfa Romeo and Sauber Motorsport extend their partnership to compete in Formula One together. 🤝— Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN (@alfaromeoracing) October 29, 2020
Full announcement 📲 https://t.co/AyddQNbgLO@alfa_romeo #SauberMotorsport pic.twitter.com/oMwhvklZSv
CEO of FCA Mike Manley stressed that both parties, Alfa Romeo and Sauber Motorsport enjoy benefits from the cooperation, using each other’s know-how. He said: „Racing and performance are at the core of Alfa Romeo’s DNA. The brand was practically born on a racetrack and today we continue to compete at the most technologically advanced level of motorsport.
„The partnership with Sauber also allows our customers to benefit from exclusive racing know-how, as it is the case of the all-new Giulia GTA and GTAm, which incorporate Sauber Engineering’s technical input particularly as it relates to advanced aerodynamics.”
Commenting on the announcement, Alfa Romeo Team Principal Frederic Vasseur said: “The extension of our relationship with Alfa Romeo is a true statement of intent from both parties. In Sauber, Alfa Romeo found a committed, performance-driven partner to which they could entrust their brand: we are honoured to carry the heritage and past success of Alfa Romeo in our name.
„Both parties always intended for this relationship to bear fruit in the long term: we have laid some solid foundations in the last three season, and we aim to reap the rewards of this work in 2021 and beyond.
Alfa Romeo currently occupies the eighth spot in the Constructors’ Championship after collecting five points in total courtesy of Kimi Räikkönen. The Swiss-Italian outfit is one of only two teams yet to confirm either of its drivers for the 2021 season.