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SAUBER & BMW Test First Hybrid C24

Happy to be Home

By Jamie Makin
December 13 2005

In a landmark day of testing, team SAUBER PETRONAS ran for the first time their hybrid C24B chassis complete with the BMW P86 V8 engine. It marks the first time that a BMW engine has powered a SAUBER Formula One car.

The day also marked the return of SAUBER veteran, Nick Heidfeld, who will pilot the BMW works entry next season.

"After an almost three-month break I could hardly wait for the first test," said the exuberant Heidfeld. "The chassis and engine ran without any problems in the morning. All the systems were working perfectly."

Heidfeld described his first impressions of the V8 powerplant. "Of course you can tell the difference in performance compared to the V10. Thatís something you just have to get used to. A positive surprise is that the engine vibrates a lot less than I had expected," the German admitted. In the afternoon we had to break off work early when the engineers spotted a problem in the data and told me to switch off the engine. Tomorrow we will resume our programme as planned."

The team will continue testing the BMW V8 tomorrow as more teams arrive at the track.

For full 2005 post-season test results click here.

P Driver Team Engine Car Tyre Best Lap Gap
1 Paffett McLaren Mercedes MP4/20 M 1:20.586 -:--.---
2 Wurz McLaren Mercedes MP4/20 M 1:20.665 0.079
3 Heidfeld SAUBER PETRONAS C24B M 1:21.634 1.048

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