For 2014, Rebellion Racing head in to the new season with two brand-new cars in the shape of the Rebellion R-One. Talking ahead of the season team manager Bart Hayden revealed that in the past the chassis the team have used have been more “consumer” orientated but with the changes in regulations for 2014 it has presented the team with the opportunity to start from scratch and not have to compromise on performance or flexibility.
The team have yet to reveal a full picture of the R-One as Hayden explains, “No one wants to give away their secrets; a card player would not show you his hand before placing his bets, so I don’t think you should be surprised that the car stays hidden until the last moment.”
With launch of the R-One slated to take place in the days following the WEC Prologue testing the team will be running their own two day test as they prepare for the opening round at Silverstone.
It hasn’t been plain sailing for the Swiss-based team as the changes to Formula 1 rules have had a direct impact on the availability of parts for LMP1 ” This has put huge pressure on motor sport suppliers” said Hayden, “This has made the job of getting all of the parts ready extremely difficult. It became apparent at the beginning of this new year that it was going to be tight to have all the parts when we wanted them and as the season has moved ever closer and the demands of F1 increased ahead of their first events, the supplier base just couldn’t cope.”
With LMP1 being dominated by six manufacturer hybrid cars from Audi, Toyota, and Porsche the privately run team face a strong battle in their class along with Lotus.
Hayden doesn’t see this as a problem though, “With strong policing of the Regulations and enforcement of the spirit of the Regulations, Privateers like Rebellion Racing should be able to compete directly on the track against the factory cars. Behind the scenes it is harder for us to compete, the factories have access to enormous resources, but as long as we can be competitive on the tracks, that is what we are looking for.”
With that said the Rebellion Racing team manager is open to working with a manufacturer in the future, “Partnering with a manufacturer in the future would probably help us to achieve the best possible results, so yes, for sure that is something that we would very much welcome. If we perform well as Privateers, that might help to open the door to working with a manufacturer.”
Asked of his expectations for the season ahead Hayden said “Rebellion Racing will be going in to every race with the target of finishing on the overall podium.”