Beat Zehnder remembers driver dispute that brought about Crimson Bull to depart Sauber : PlanetF1

Sauber might have develop into Crimson Bull Racing had been it not for a driver dispute concerning Enrique Bernoldi, says Alfa Romeo crew supervisor Beat Zehnder.

Sauber had been backed by Crimson Bull from 1995 to 2001, the vitality drink firm the crew’s title sponsor however that relationship ended abruptly when the Hinwil-based crew refused to place Bernoldi within the automobile.

Backed by Crimson Bull, the corporate needed their driver to race for Sauber however Zehnder wasn’t impressed with the Brazilian’s performances in Components 3000.

An sad Crimson Bull withdrew their assist.

“Crimson Bull pushed for Enrique, who had pushed in Components 3000 in 2000,” Zehnder recalled to the Past the Grid podcast. “Peter Sauber requested me to observe him all through the season. So I sat on the command submit for each Components 3000 race.”

Sauber as a substitute fielded Kimi Raikkonen as Nick Heidfeld’s team-mate, the crew additionally making the decision to drop Bernoldi as their check driver.

“Why does he wish to be a Components One driver? Is it as a result of he needed free entry to the largest golf equipment? That was my feeling,” Zehnder stated of the driving force who would go onto be part of Arrows.

Actually he was perplexed by Sauber crew boss Peter Sauber had even giving the driving force a check driver position for 2 seasons.

“We nonetheless can’t clarify why he did that,” Zehnder mused. “After which we went for Kimi as a substitute of Enrique, and I feel that’s when the concept of changing into Crimson Bull Racing was buried.”

Requested whether or not Sauber, as a substitute of Jaguar, might have been the beginning crew for Crimson Bull Racing, he replied: “I feel so, sure.”

Red Bull celebrate Max Verstappen World Championship success. Abu Dhabi December 2021

Bernoldi spent two seasons with Arrows and failed to attain a single level at a time when solely the top-six scored.

Whereas Sauber went onto hyperlink up with BMW, racing as BMW Sauber for 5 seasons, Crimson Bull purchased the Jaguar crew on the finish of 2004.

The crew went onto win 4 Drivers’ Championship titles from 2010 to 2013, additionally taking the Constructors’ crown, earlier than including a fifth Drivers’ title final season with Max Verstappen.

As Crimson Bull Racing they’ve taken 84 wins, Sauber – now Alfa Romeo – have only one due to Robert Kubica’s 2008 Canadian GP victory.


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