The Haas F1 Team unveiled the design and livery of their VF-20 Formula One car yesterday for this year’s packed 22-race 2020 FIA Formula One World Championship. They are once again, the first Formula One team to unveil their new car. Last year the team revealed their new challenger in Central London but chose to do this year’s reveal across the team’s social media channels, showcasing a variety of digital renderings of the VF-20, which will once again be driven by Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen.
Gone is the striking and impressive black and gold livery of 2019 and welcome a completely new livery, which sees the American team return to its traditional base colours of grey, red and black in a contemporary restyling of a familiar theme.
Sponsor-wise, Haas Automation maintains its significant presence on the VF-20, the global CNC machine tool company founded by team owner Gene Haas is prominent on the sidepods, engine cover, front wing endplates and rear wing. This had been a continuous theme in the livery since the team’s Formula One debut with the VF-16 in 2016. Team partners JACK & JONES, PEAK, BlueDEF, Richard Mille, Alpinestars, Windshear and Pirelli continue to have on-car branding while MindMaze and Nominet will feature on a variety of key team assets throughout trackside operations.
The new VF-20 will make its actual physical debut on Wednesday February 19th, which is the first day of pre-season testing at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya in Spain. Grosjean and Magnussen will officially unveil the car at 8:00a.m. outside the Haas F1 Team garage at the circuit. Magnussen will put the new car through its paces on the first day of testing, with Grosjean driving it on the Thursday and then both drivers will split their time behind the wheel on the third and final day of the first week of testing.
“I’m pleased to see the car return to the more familiar Haas Automation colours, it’s certainly a livery that people identify with,” said Gene Haas, founder of Haas Automation and chairman of Haas F1 Team. “Frankly, I’m hoping the VF-20 will return us to the kind of form we ran in 2018 when we finished fifth in the constructors’ championship. 2019 was a tough season to endure. We’ve been through a real education process, one that comes to all Formula One teams at some stage. I’m trusting we’ve learned from those lessons and have applied that knowledge into making the VF-20 a more competitive entry. It’s important to me that we’re back in the mix and consistently scoring points, we certainly have the capability and we’ve proved as an organization we can do it.”
Team principal Guenther Steiner commented; “It’s always exciting to see the development of a new Formula One car and undoubtedly the VF-20 has to deliver where our previous car didn’t. With the regulations remaining stable into this season, it’s allowed us to improve our understanding of the car and to scrutinize ourselves more in order to find solutions and applications to channel into the design of the VF-20. Last year was definitely a set-back, one I would never have asked for, but you learn from such situations – we all have. Everybody at the team was forced to look at themselves and understand what they can do better. I’m looking forward to seeing the VF-20 make its track debut. As always in testing, you want many things, but lots of mileage, reliability and speed would be welcomed as we ready ourselves for the first race in Australia.”
Pre-season testing at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya takes place from 19th to 21st February, and then again from 26th to 28th February. The 2020 FIA Formula One World Championship then gets underway with the season-opening Australian Grand Prix 15th March in Melbourne.
Simon Burrell is Editor of Our Man Behind The Wheel, a professional photographer and former saloon car racing driver.
Images courtesy of Haas F1 Team