Alfa announce ‘successful shakedown’ of the C42

Jon Wilde
Valtteri Bottas in the Alfa Romeo garage. Abu Dhabi December 2021

Valtteri Bottas in the Alfa Romeo garage during post-season testing. Abu Dhabi December 2021

Alfa Romeo have confirmed their new 2022 challenger, the C42, has undertaken a “successful shakedown”.

Unlike their F1 rivals who have carried out similar exercises during launch season, Alfa Romeo did not show off anything of the car or its colour scheme beforehand.

Indeed, the team admitted the C42 had a ‘camouflage’ livery for its running at the Italian circuit near Maranello, which is owned by Ferrari and used for their development and testing. Ferrari are, of course, Alfa Romeo’s engine supplier.

The Alfa Romeo garage wall. Italy September 2021
The Alfa Romeo garage wall at the Italian Grand Prix. Italy September 2021

In a short statement on their official website, without any accompanying images, Alfa Romeo began by referring to the “successful shakedown”.

They said the C42 “took to the track for the first time just after 11am to perform system checks”.

“In distinctly wintry weather, with rain lashing down on the track, Valtteri Bottas completed the first outing of the car under the gaze of team principal Frederic Vasseur, technical director Jan Monchaux and team-mate Guanyu Zhou,” continued the statement.

“With all preliminary tests completed, the team will now prepare for the first testing session of the season, to be held in Barcelona from February 23-25 ahead of the official team launch on February 27.”

The launch date is unusual in that it takes place after the initial ‘pre-season track session’, as Formula 1 are officially referring to the Barcelona running rather than being a test. Also, it has been scheduled for a Sunday as opposed to a more typical weekday.

But coverage of what the C42 will look like at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya is likely to be limited because the three-day session takes place behind closed doors and media presence is being tightly restricted.

 

Since his move from Mercedes at the end of last year, the shakedown was not the first time Bottas has driven an Alfa Romeo on track because he took part in the end-of-season test for them in Abu Dhabi.

Zhou, meanwhile, is looking forward to his first season of Formula 1 having stepped up from F2 and left the academy of Alpine, for whom he drove in FP1 at the 2021 Austrian Grand Prix.

Alfa Romeo were not the only team to experience inclement weather for their shakedown on Tuesday – wet tyres were also required when Williams rolled out the FW44 at Silverstone on the same day as that car’s launch.

 

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