Super Aguri F1
Super Aguri is an all Japanese team, owned by Aguri Suzuki, and introduces a completely new lineup, a first since Toyota in 2002. Sporting a Japanese engine, courtesy Honda, two Japanese drivers, Yuji Ide and Takuma Sato, the team had a tough time in its debut season. Lack of preparation time, caused due to their entry confirmation in January, followed by their driver line-up in February, Super Aguri used a four-year old modified Arrows chassis for their first three Grands Prix.
The results were disastrous, with Ide unable to finish a single race due to mechanical failure, and Sato only managing 18th place. Ide was replaced by Sakon Yamamoto and Franck Montagny, though this did not improve matters. The 2006 season ended with no points gained.
For the next season, Sato teamed up with Anthony Davidson, former test driver for Honda. The season did not start as expected when the team car did not clear the FIA crash test, as the rear was damaged more than is allowed.
But the team managed to make up for the roadblocks by displaying impressive performances at Canada and Spain. The team won their first points since their debut, attained by Sato. With their new Honda V8 engines performing on par with BAR, Toyota and Renault, during qualifier the team established itself as a strong competitor.
Sato went on to bag to a sixth place finish as well as three points at the Canadian Grand Prix, and more importantly passing Fernando Alonso, defending World champion, on the way. This good news was followed by a sad one, as Honda retracted its support to Super Aguri team, which saw a dip in its performance after that. The team could not attain a top 10 finish in any of the 11 Grands Prix that followed.
The team has been plagued with rumors of a buyout by an Indian company and could not even participate in the winter tests due to financial constraints. For the 2008 season, Sato and Davidson have been confirmed, and a good season is expected out of them.
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