Formula One was back last week.
All ten teams that will enter the 2018 Formula One World Championship showed off their cars for the first time during the first winter test session of the year in Spain.
The weather offered everything, sun, rain and even snow.
The temperatures meant that it’s unlikely that we can read too much into everyone’s performances as cars behave differently when a few degree’s alters in an afternoon let alone, cold and icy conditions in Spain compared to the desert heat in the Middle East.
But none the less all the cars have had their first outings so what did we learn?
Sauber Alfa Romeo
With a new and closer technical partnership with Ferrari, Sauber, who finished bottom of the constructors table in 2017 have a new livery and title sponsor.
The blue is gone for the white and red of Italian car manufacturer Alfa Romeo, owned by Fiat.
? Sauber F1 Team (@SauberF1Team) 26 February 2018
Team Principal Frédéric Vasseur remains in place as does Marcus Ericsson.
The second seat is now the home of Charles Leclerc.
? Sauber F1 Team (@SauberF1Team) 27 February 2018
You’ll notice from the photos that the most obvious change in 2018 is the addition of the Halo. All the cars will have this fitted for every session, so they have now been fully incorporated into the livery schemes.
? Sauber F1 Team (@SauberF1Team) 1 March 2018
But whilst it is obvious the new Sauber Alfa Romeo looks very nice (Halo ignored), how did it run?
Will they find themselves regularly on the back row of the grid once again in 2018?
Charles Leclerc set the fastest time of the day for the team on Day Two, using the Soft compound.
His 1minute 22.721s lap was good enough to be the best the team could muster, but it was 0.880s behind the fasted time set by Force India immediately in front of them in the timing sheets.
Sauber however completed 283 laps in Spain, a total of 818.4miles.
That was more mileage than Williams, Renault, McLaren, Red Bull Racing, Haas and Force India.
So things are looking good on a reliability stand point.
Ericsson believes that Sauber will be the team with the most to learn from the session, with some much change from their 2017 challenger.
?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 because we have changed so much both mechanically and aerodynamically,?
?And we have a two-year newer engine, so we?re probably the ones that have the newest or most different package.? he told