For the first time in Formula 1 racing history, a team has launched its season and new livery in Canada: SportPesa Racing Point Formula 1 Team — with Canadian driver Lance Stroll and Mexican Sergio Perez forming an all-North American lineup — unveiled its new look and name in front of a crowd of fans, media and special guests at the John Bassett Theatre in the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.
“This is a new chapter with a very exciting journey that lies ahead of us,” said Stroll. “It’s a dream come true to be standing on this stage as part of SportPesa Racing Point Formula 1, here in Canada launching this car.”
Stroll and Perez were joined on the stage by Team Principal and CEO Otmar Szafnauer and Technical Director Andrew Green. UK-based Sky Sports personality David Croft was the MC. SportPesa Racing Point Formula 1 is owned by a consortium of investors that includes Canadian clothing magnate–and father to Lance Stroll–Lawrence Stroll,
Among the team’s sponsors are Canadian companies Bombardier and Canada Life.
Szafnauer said the team name is a natural for the new ownership group that has committed to investing in a winner.
“Basically, we are a team of racers,” he said. “Racing Point encompasses who we are and is appropriate. It reminds everyone we are a Formula 1 team, not a baseball team. And thanks to our new title sponsor SportPesa.”
Besides a refined colour scheme that adds more blue to the primary pink colour, the new car also features changes to meet “significant” new rule changes, said Green. But he added the new ownership group is fostering optimism throughout the team.
“They have given us the tools we need to move forward,” he said. “We have been working really hard over the winter, and the development of the car throughout the season will be significant. This new investment in the team is something we haven’t had before.
“This is what the team wants to do. We want to go racing.”
The model car with the 2019 livery will be on display for the duration of the AutoShow in the Auto Exotica feature on the 100 Level of the North Building of the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.
The 2019 Canadian International AutoShow, presented by The Toronto Star and wheels.ca, takes place February 15th to 24th at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. For tickets and show information, please visit autoshow.ca.