BMW Sauber has confirmed that it will introduce its double-decker diffuser for the Turkish Grand Prix next weekend in Istanbul.
The team endured a wretched weekend in Monte Carlo as both Robert Kubica and Nick Heidfeld struggled on the streets on Monaco. After the pair failed to make it past the first phase of qualifying, Kubica retired on lap 28 with brake problems, while Heidfeld trailed in a lap down in eleventh place.
A disappointing start to the year means BMW have managed just six points so far this season and having admitted that the team needs to work quickly to turn things around, BMW motorsport chief Mario Theissen confirmed that the new diffuser will now be fitted to the F1.09 for the first time in Turkey.
“Ahead of the Turkish Grand Prix our results are quite sobering,” he said. “Nobody in the team expected the season to pan out as it has so far. After taking a forward step in Spain, we were clearly off the pace in Monaco. To regain our competitiveness we will have to ramp up our development speed significantly. In Istanbul we will have the next step of our development ready and will be using a multistage diffuser for the first time.
“After three successful years, this phase is our first setback. We can deal with it. After all, it was the same team in Munich and Hinwil that ensured our progressive advancement since the BMW Sauber F1 Team was founded. We are all determined to get ourselves back among the front runners again.”
Head of engineering Willy Rampf added that the introduction of the diffuser had provided the team with an extra challenge due to the revisions that needed to be made to the car as a result, but said he was confident it would lead to a step forward.
“We'll be lining up in Turkey with a new development package, which also features a double diffuser,” he said. “Since the F1.09 concept was not designed for this, we had to make a number of aerodynamic adjustments. There are modifications to the front wings, side bargeboards, rim shields and the rear part of the engine cover. We expect this to take us a step forward, although we know that our rivals are not standing still.”