Marcus Ericsson says his Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Team has gone through the biggest transformation between 2017 and 2018, thanks to the radical new design of their C37 and the availability of a 2018-specification Ferrari power unit.
Ericsson, who has been joined at the team by 2017 FIA Formula 2 champion Charles Leclerc this season, says the vastly different concept of the C37 compared to the C36 that scored only five points last season, as well as being able to call on the up-to-date Ferrari engine, means the Hinwil-based outfit has gone through the biggest changes of any team on the grid ahead of the 2018 campaign.
“Obviously some teams have changed power unit manufacturer so they will have had to change some things, but I think just looking purely at the car side I think we have made the biggest change,” Ericsson is quoted as saying by f1i.com.
“We have changed so much both mechanically and aerodynamically. We have a two-year newer engine, so we’re probably the ones that have the newest or most different package.”
Heading into this weeks second and final pre-season test at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, Ericsson says Sauber will need as much track time as possible to understand their C37, which is a completely different concept to its predecessor, particularly after the disruptions of the first due to the weather.
“We have such a different concept compared to last year we need every lap we can get to understand it,” said Ericsson.
“We can already see there is a lot of potential in it, but we need to have time to sort of explore the different set-up options and see how the car reacts to these kinds of things and we haven’t really been able to do that much this week.
“So of course for a team like us it’s not great to have this kind of weather, but next week is supposed to be good and then we need to try and do as many laps as possible and just make the most of it.”