2010 F1 season preview: HRT

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HRT have launched their 2010 F1 car but not tested it
HRT have launched their 2010 F1 car but not tested it

Adrian Campos’s dream of a Spanish F1 team will be realised in 2010 – but it won’t have his name on it. A late change of ownership means the team formerly known as Campos will instead race as HRT.

Their car only appeared for the first time last week and hasn’t tested yet. The learning curve for this outfit will be near-vertical this year.

Car design

Although it was the last car to appear the Dallara-designed car was the first of the new teams’ cars to begin construction.

They will use the same Cosworth engines as the other two newcomers plus Williams, so part of their performance will depend on how strong the CA2010 is.

But with no mileage so far they’re going to have to treat the opening rounds as tests.

Driver line-up

Neither of the two drivers charged with developing their untested car have ever started an F1 race.

Bruno Senna had a quiet 2009 after missing out on a Honda drive when the team was put up for sale. He did appear in a few sports car races.

Prior to that he was runner-up in GP2, finishing behind the super-experienced Giorgio Pantano. That’s nothing to be ashamed of, particularly given that Senna spent many years out of the cockpit following the death of his uncle, at a time when many of his peers were winning kart races.

Karun Chandhok is very well-liked but the truth is his results in the junior categories have been less than spectacular, whether or not he’s enjoyed the benefit of a front-running team.

However he knows his new team mate well from their time at iSport together and he enjoys the support of Bernie Ecclestone.


Since the take over Colin Kolles, ex-Jordan, Midland and Force India, has taken over running the team. That, along with the appointment of Jacky Eeckelaert on the technical side, brings some badly-needed experience to the team.


An un-tested car and two rookie drivers.

Poll: championship position

It looks like survival is the goal for this team.

Where will HRT finish in the 2010 Constructors' Championship?

  • 13th (42%)
  • 12th (38%)
  • 11th (11%)
  • 10th (5%)
  • 1st (2%)
  • 9th (2%)
  • 7th (0%)
  • 3rd (0%)
  • 4th (0%)
  • 6th (0%)
  • 2nd (0%)
  • 5th (0%)
  • 8th (0%)

Total Voters: 1,254

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2010 F1 season

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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58 comments on “2010 F1 season preview: HRT”

  1. Venelin Ivanov
    9th March 2010, 15:35

    I don’t think they’ll finish the season at all.

    1. I agree, but I certainly hope we’re wrong…

  2. I am fairly confident they will be ahead of all the new teams, at least driver wise, kind of hoping Senna will bring some of what his uncle had back into F1.

    1. im gonna have to disagree with that. infact i would take any veteran driver in a new car over a potentially good driver in a new car any day.

    2. for what ive seen bruno senna is realy poor driver compared to some gp2 and rookie drivers the only reason he is there its his last name

  3. I wish them good luck but hope they do not get in the way too much in the first few races.

    They MUST have some problems with an un tested car and such inexperienced drivers, I’m a little surprised that they are being allowed out on a real track in the circumstances.

    Still,it will be good to watch how they do.

  4. A late takeover of the team, the car just revealed to the public less than two weeks before the first race, no testing and two rookie drivers, it is hard to see how they will do anything but be last this season, but at least they are due to actually race which is more than can be said for USF1.

  5. Ned Flanders
    9th March 2010, 15:49

    So Bruno Senna has not only not sat in an F1 Car for about 18 months, he has not sat in any open wheel car since Autumn 2008. I think the combination of a untried car, an untried driver line up and no money will spell disater for Hispania. They need to find some sponsors ASAP or I could see them folding before the end of the season

    1. Agreed. Anything is possible with money, but without it they will soon collapse. In this way USF1 was lucky: they collapsed before the season started and the heat really turned up.

      1. Anything can be possible with money, but they need to spend it right. Toyota was the team with one of the biggest budgets, but they never really achieved something.

        But if you look at Minardi, they had almost no money, and they still managed to survive for quite a long time (i’m not talking about their results).

        It can be possible for HRT to survive, but it will be tough..

  6. I just get a feeling that they might perform better than Lotus and Virgin…. Lets wait to see the results!

  7. Well i expect them to come out last on the grid, but I hope they do make it through to the end of the season to get a better go at next year.

    Interesting to see, a lot of people voted them to end 13th, I wonder who they expect them to finish behind (the gosthly vultures or the American dream?) considering there will be only 12 teams to compete this year!

    1. Just a joke mate. I voted 13th too == DNF. Considering how raw the team is it will be a struggle for the team to finish the season. Will they even have enough parts to put both the cars on the grid?

      If they do get some sponsors there is no reason why they should not mix it up with the rest of the new teams. Have to see how driver’s cope with such a bad car. As far as I can remember the only new driver who ever managed to do a good job was Alonso for Minardi, but then again even he had testing experience before he raced. Oh well we will know in a few days.

  8. The one thing HRT have going for them is a total lack of expectation – just getting to the grid will be an achievement, anything more a bonus.

    There are some decent people working behind the scenes at HRT. Dallara has never managed to replicate its success in other forms of single seater racing in F1, but it should have produced a solid if unspectacular car. Geoff Willis is no Adrian Newey but he knows how to screw a car together and make it work reasonably well. Colin Kolles isn’t the world’s greatest team boss but he’s been around enough to know how F1 works. Bruno Senna doesn’t look like replicating his uncle’s career but he’s there on his merits.

    If the team can focus on getting Senna’s car working for him they may pleasantly surprise a few people a few races in. Let’s face it, they’d have to go really badly wrong to disappoint anyone.

  9. It’s a tricky one for me. At the start of the season I think they’ll almost certainly be the slowest, a lack of testing and preparation time for the drivers will put them at the back. The car itself may not be too bad – last time Dallara built an F1 car (for Scuderia Italia) they certainly didn’t shame themselves in an era when it was very hard to move forwards as a small team. Even if their car is a second quicker than Lotus and Virgin, the drivers probably wont be. Come the end of the season (providing they’re still here) they could well beat Lotus and Virgin, but for now – no way.

  10. The end is an obvious place for HRT. Surviving the season will be a success for them.

  11. Does this not end these drivers careers if the team turns out to be rubbish, and fold halfway through the season?

  12. Eje Gustafsson
    9th March 2010, 16:33

    I would be somewhat surprised if both cars made it to the starting grid, suspect that at least one of the HRT cars will start from the Pit (believe Lotus and/or Virgin will have one or two cars starting from Pit as well).
    Out of the 3 new comers I don’t think more then 1 or 2 will finish a race distance (I don’t think Virgin ever made a full race distance run in testing). I expect bu lap 20 we will already see many of these new teams that made it that many laps will be blue flagged. I would be surprised if by lap 30 not everyone of these new teams have not been lapped by the leaders. Further more the one or two cars that makes race distance will be at least 3 laps down on the winner and 1 if not 2 laps down on the existing teams. I just hope they will not ending out crashing out anyone that is lapping them. Expect to see at least one of these cars out during the the first lap. HRT will have so little fuel consumption data that they either will fill up to the brim to make race distance resulting in them being so heavy that they might be far slower the expect 4 sec of the pace as Lotus indicated they are to the front runners. Or they will simply run out of fuel before race is finished (if they make it that far in one piece and without mechanical failures).
    This year we will have 3 classes. Front runners, Mid fielders and then the new teams. The mid fielders will steal points off the front runners but these new teams I don’t see get into the points at all this year and be a points threat to any of the existing teams. Only threat I believe these new teams will be is road hazards and bowling bowls in the first corner. :(
    I like to see more teams in F1 but 1 team not done any testing and the other 2 teams be as much as 4 second of the pace of the front runners is saddening. To bad there is no 107% Qualification rule in F1 it could be needed this year. If looking at the Barcelona times Virgin barely made it under 107% with one car and Lotus was close to 107% with one car but got both in there (if we don’t count Fairuz since he after all isn’t a race driver).

    1. Completely agree.

      I think we should be more concerned than we are about these new teams posing a real hazard on the track. A car that is 4 seconds off the pace being piloted by a rookie with zero experience is, at best, a road blockage to be dodged by the faster cars, and at worst could be a real danger to the front runners that will go flying past them. To me, that scenario does not increase competition, it’s more like Sports Car races with different competition classes on the track. I am really concerned about this.

      And just wait for the wailing when the first time one of these new rookies/teams takes out Alonso or Rubens or Weber while they’re on a flyer and having a good race. That’s when the sparks will fly and the broadcasters will have to bleep the audio on the television coverage!

  13. Without the car running, we can’t say they are deadlast.They used the extra time to develope their car.Also remember that Virgin still didn’t do much testing either.I’m sure they got sponsers like Poonch Loyd.For them,the most realistic dream will be to stay ahead of the new teams.If they can do that-atleast for a couple of races,I think they are ok.

  14. Doesn’t anyone else think it’s a little crazy allowing a brand new, untried and untested car out on the track in race conditions with 22 other cars? the team have no idea of the issues or potential problems they my come up against and ultimately it could be a safety issue. I think the FIA should have insisted on at least a day of testing for this team. As far as the drivers go, they’re racing drivers, they’ll cope just as they have through all the other series they’ve competed in, it jus might take longer to get some performance from the car with no F1 experience in the driver’s seat.

    1. How about firday and saturday practice? That should give enough information to
      a) The team to decide fuel load, reliability etc, and
      b) FIA to decide if they should be allowed to race!

    2. Yes, it’s crazy. I think there will be some cars from the new teams that pose a real hazard to the other racers on the track.

      These slow, unproven cars driven by rookies will have a large and unfortunate impact on races, at least for the first half of the year. They will inevitably interfere with the races of the front runners, and I fear that they may contribute to crashes as well.

      I think bringing in new teams is great. I think the way the FIA has handled it is not. At the least, they should make Thursday a “new team testing day” and give them all a free engine and a few sets of tires, and let them lap the circuit for the day. It would help these teams a lot, I suspect.

      1. Yea, they can use some of the 16 engines and 418 tyres allocated originally to USF1!

        I think it would be good to let the new teams use some thursdays up to a maximum of say 7-8 full testing days (1-2 cars running for the first 4 GP meetings for HRT, Lotus and Virgin the same, with testing km done during pre-season accounted for).

        The FIA can do this with reference to improving on track safety.

  15. Agree with you.And I think it’s not in the race but it can be a big problem in the pits.The new pit crew along with inexperienced drivers are a threat to pitstop safety.

  16. I vote for 13th! Although there are only 12 teams, I vote them for the last place. Sorry to say, but they are so arrogant towards other newbies by saying that they will be the best, although they have not even test their car. Not to mention that they only have 2 rookies for their driver line up. I don’t mean to be harsh, but they should keep their head low with the condition they have now.

  17. I would of thought they would off been allowed at least a shakedown ffs. Every other team had one plus there tests.

    Ad what happens to there test days they didn’t use. Surely they cud use one of them with one car.

  18. 1st (1%, 4 Votes)!

    ha ha haaaaaaaaaaaaaa !

  19. EastLondoner
    9th March 2010, 17:14

    Seeing that untested car above just brings back memories of 1997 and Lola. Do hope they do much better. 10th at best I think.

  20. the brawn of 2010!! (of course i dont mean against the rest of the field…just the 3 new teams)

  21. HRT is the best joke of 2010 season. Poor Senna…

  22. Last probably but I have to say I really like this team and theymay well just survive based on the spirit they’ve shown already. The odds are against them and they need sponsors but just a few weeks back they were in an awful situation but then suddenly there was a deal, there was a car revealed and am line up confirmed. It took them a while but then they got moving and found a solution. I like that and I hope it stands them in good stead.
    I don’t know much about Chandhok but I’m pleased Bruno got the seat. I doubt Bruno will be as good as Ayrton particulary because he had such a long gap in his career but he’s still shown enough talent to make the grid despite that and that’s a good sign.

  23. 13th. Dead before the middle of the season.

    Has anyone managed to explain why Chandhok is going to get a superlicence?

    1. A driver can get a superlicence if they’ve managed five podiums in the last two years in GP2. Chandhok has done that, counting both GP2 Asia and the main series.

  24. Sush Meerkat
    9th March 2010, 18:15

    “he enjoys the support of Bernie Ecclestone.”

    Of course he does, he’s Indian, who wants an Indian race?.

    ” A late change of ownership means the team formerly known as Campos will instead race as HRT.”

    Will the FIA be investigating the new owners ability to run an F1 team like they did last year to the owners that didn’t actually have the money.

  25. Good luck team Hormone Replacement Therapy!

  26. jose arellano
    9th March 2010, 19:50

    they should sign someone with experience. they are going to be totally lost!

  27. This must be the worst team ever! They didn’t do any testing, they drive with 2 rookies and they also drive with Cosworth engines! So the’re probably unreliable, don’t know what the engine will bring and the don’t know how quick their drivers will be and wether they are able to set up the car! I hope for their dake that uncle Ayrton was right (You think I’m good? Wait ’till you see my cousing Bruno), but that Chandhok guy is really unimpressive and I can’t believe they picked him. Probably cheap but I think Grosjean would have been better. 12th!

  28. It has been along time since we had a truly new team, this season we have three.

    They will all have problems, just remember how long it took for Brawn (aka BAR/Honda) and Red Bull (aka Stewart/Jaguar) to get to where they were last year.

    Just hope with so many new teams and inexperience drivers it does not cause too many problems at the back.

  29. Marc Connell
    9th March 2010, 20:31

    i voted 10th. Maybe they will do well. We never know.

  30. Gad, there’s a lot of spitefulness in some of the comments….. I voted 11th – nothing more than gut feelings, of course. I think Virgin will be worse.

  31. HounslowBusGarage
    9th March 2010, 20:51

    I think I’m going to be shouting for HRT, purely on the basis that no one gives them a chance.

    Oh, and . . .

    An un-tested car and two rookie drivers.”

    Come on Keith, say what you really think!

  32. 285 persons didn’t realize that we have only 12 teams this season…

    1. I know theres only 12 teams, still voted 13, i don’t expect them to make it to canada tbh.

  33. It’s gonna be an interesting one. I’d say they have the funding to last the season. We have no idea about this team due to their lack of testing – expect to see a lot of them on the track this friday. They’ll need all of the milage under their belts they can get it.

    If the car is a) relabile and b) quick, they’ll beat Virgin and Lotus as those teams are suffering from those respective problems. That said, I’ve put them as 12th, and therefore, stone dead last, but as I said, if they can master the car, they could finish 10th. Let’s wait and see. We’ve got 8 months of racing to get through yet!

    1. well you cant expect reliablity from a car that only has the milage from the factory onto the back of a truck and to the display stage

  34. I dont’ think we cannot say anuthing useful about this new team. I don’t even know who they are. I did not have high regard for Aerton Senna, so that does not help.
    I wish them luck. I rank them same level as Lotus.

  35. it’s actually going to be quite an intereting battle at the back of races, with HRT vs Lotus vs Virgin. am looking forward to it!

  36. Forget HRT – It’s a Dallara in all but name – Dallara are no mugs and know how to engineer a car together – I’d put them best of the new team by Barcelona with Virgin a close second.

  37. Last place.

  38. I think they’ll be the best rookie team this season,even though they have two rookie drivers.I’ll Karun’s commentary for Star Sports.Does anyone know who is replacing him?

  39. Huh? I just voted (12th) and the maths looks a tad dodgy!
    # 12th (40%, 388 Votes)
    # 13th (39%, 390 Votes)
    Total Voters: 978
    How can 388 votes be a higher percentage than 390 votes? Can we trust nothing on the interwebs anymore?
    How many times did Ferrari get to vote them 13th?

  40. I really like the look of this car, it reminds me an awful lost of the 1993 Sauber (main sponsors were lighthouse) in shape and almost colour, although lighter. Wonder if senna can do a bit better than j.j.letho

  41. 12th. The lack of testing is a major problem.

    That’s not going to stop me from hoping that Bruno can pull off a “Monaco 84” drive though!

  42. I voted 12th for some obvious reasons but I don’t understand why people voted 13th as it is clear now there is only 12 teams on the grid this season.

  43. I voted 12th, but I couldnt contain my laughter when I saw that most people voted them 13th. I hope they can at least survive this season, but it seems most of us are not optimistic…

  44. Looking good in Binbag Grey

  45. These guys are going to be championship deciders ………………………………………………..

    backmarking the views of Ferrari et al

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