Livery of the Day – Super Aguri SA08A

Red, white and black? These are, without question, the most commonly used colours in Formula 1. No less than five teams used at least two of these as their main colours in the 2008 season alone. However, one of those teams created a livery that used those colours better than the rest. Super Aguri.

Super Aguri 1

Things looked grim from the off for Super Aguri. Their debut season was run in a four year old 2002 Arrows chassis, made to fit the latest regulations. They were predictably uncompetitive, laughable at times, with a large portion of the blame rightly attributed to the drivers that weren’t Sato. Their second season was miles better, bringing in a more capable driver in Davidson and scoring points twice, including Sato’s memorable 6th place in Canada. Their third season, unfortunately, was to be their last. However, their 2008 livery was so good that despite only appearing in five races, lives long in the memory for many F1 fans.

Supr Aguri 5

This livery is just perfectly matched to the shape of this car. With white being the main colour, large sections of red wrap around the nose, going from sidepod to sidepod, as well as the top of the engine cover, covering the airbox. Both of these sections are thinly bordered with black. This is the main design on the car and it looks fantastic, and with no real main sponsor, every logo is evenly represented and displayed in a way that allows the car to remain looking lovely.

Super Aguri 3

The big difference on the 2008 livery was the big black section on the nose and cockpit. This really set it apart from the other red and white cars in the field that year. It made the car look a lot more threatening and adds an extra something that was missing the year before, although that too was already a great livery. Upon looking at this livery in further detail, I’ve noticed how the top black and red sections also sweep behind the cockpit and along the top of the sidepod, creating a lovely red, black and white design beside the cockpit. The black opens up to cover a large portion of the rear near the axle.

SONY DSC

My biggest gripe with this era of cars was the excessive number of winglets all over the pace, making them look quite messy. That said, Super Aguri did a great job to keep them all looking good as possible. The outside of the winglets, including the front and rear wings, are red. The insides of the winglets are white with the insides of the wing endplates being black. It’s a great combination of uniformity on the outside and contrast on the inside.

It’s a shame we didn’t see more of this livery and this team. A great design that will admired for many years to come.

Livery of the Day – Super Aguri SA08A

Livery Update – DJR Team Penske & HRT

Well, looks like Stone Brothers Racing have completed their return to V8 Supercars!

Vortex Pirtek

Not really of course, but after the return of a Caltex livery with 888, DJR Team Penske have brought on Pirtek as a sponsor for Phillip Island, so all of a sudden it feels very 2005 over here. Very nostalgic! Imagine they had used yellow rims too, and if Ambrose was still racing…

DJR Pirtek

The livery design itself is the same design as before but in classic Pirtek colours and Coulthard having a red rear wing to Pye’s blue. It seems to be a Penske way of doing things, as the IndyCar team did the same thing last year.

I wonder what colour the car will be next week!

HRT Anzac

HRT have also revealed a livery update, this time to commemorate ANZAC day and support the ANZAC Appeal. It features the silhouettes of ANZAC soldiers walking beside a mountain range, that is also stylised to give a tearing effect. I’m not sure whether this is symbolic or not, so lets just acknowledge that this livery being a great touch from Holden. That said, it sort of blends in with other one off liveries that Holden brings out as many of them do end up looking quite similar.

Livery Update – DJR Team Penske & HRT

Livery of the Day -Tyrrell 025

1997 has to be one of, if not my favourite season for Formula 1 liveries. Such a great variety and I can’t say I dislike a single one of them. So why would I choose to review the Tyrrell 025 as opposed to the famously unique snake inspired Jordan 197 or the beautiful blue and white Benetton B197? Well, who else would?

Tyrrell 1

The car was driven by Jos Verstappen and Mika Salo but it was slow and terribly unreliable. Salo managed to score two points at the hectic Monaco Grand Prix, but the two of them could only manage to crack the top 10 on three other occasions. Whilst the car certainly performed like a backmarker, it distinctly looked like one too.

Tyrrell 2

This is a prime example of a mainly white car that many would consider boring. I mostly agree, but I do think it has some redeeming features. The thin black and white lines that run from the rear to the nose are the main design. It has a thicker black line bordering the bottom and it is broken up by solid white alongside the cockpit. I actually quite like this part of the livery and I imagine if it had Martini on it, more people would agree with me. The black on top of the cockpit is a neat touch, as is the flash of main design on the front wing support (what an interesting nose section by the way. Haven’t really seen anything like it). The chequerboard pattern on the barge boards was also an interesting design choice, although it didn’t fit with the rest of the livery. Perhaps that’s where HRT got its inspiration… 

Tyrrell 3

Unfortunately, there isn’t much else to say about the design. There is a solid black section on top of the sidepods and the rear wing is mainly black, both of which help to break up the monotony. The front wing also had some black during parts of the season, which was an improvement, but some further black would have helped the engine cover.

The difference between a boring livery these days and livery like this is that the teams back then, such as Tyrrell, usually had the benefit of having a few sponsors to fill up some of the empty spaces on the car and no matter how ugly, it’s far easier to make an attractive livery when you have something to work off. PIAA is a very attractive logo in my opinion; its downfall being that it doesn’t bring any colour to the livery. I find that it can be put on almost any livery and look good. Unfortunately, as was also often the case in the 90s, by mid season the car had filled up it’s spaces with a multitude of smaller sponsors of all shapes and colours, the worst offender being Xena: Warrior Princess. Desperate times call for desperate measures.

Tyrrell 4.jpg

That said, at its cleanest, it was a little plain but overall, pretty easy on the eye and certainly not offensive. I’m not sure a car like this would be appreciated so much today, but back when the grid was filled with lots of different colours, there was space for a couple of white and black cars.

Livery of the Day -Tyrrell 025