Aston Martin is returning to the Formula One grid in 2021 for the first time in over 60 years via a rebranding of the Racing Point team.
Aston Martin’s team, officially known as Aston Martin Cognizant Formula One Team thanks to a sponsorship deal with IT services provider Cognizant, will initially call Racing Point’s former digs at the Silverstone Circuit in the United Kingdom home, but will move into a new headquarters under construction at the same site around mid-2022.
The new headquarters was originally scheduled to be completed in mid-2021, though Covid-19 coronavirus disruptions delayed things. The current headquarters at the Silverstone site was built in 1991, originally for the Jordan F1 team.
Aston Martin’s F1 team will carry a green and gold livery and rely on power units from Mercedes-Benz AMG. The team plans to reveal its new race car in March at an event at Aston Martin’s own headquarters in Gaydon, U.K.
Confirmed drivers are four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel and Lance Stroll. Stroll’s father Lawrence Stroll is both chairman of Aston Martin and the Aston Martin F1 team. Otmar Szafnauer has been named CEO and team principal of the team.
Aston Martin’s first and only stint in F1 started in 1959 and ended the following year. The team competed with the DBR4 race car (and later the DBR5) and listed Carroll Shelby and Roy Salvadori as drivers. The team would have just five starts over the two years of competition and ultimately pulled out to focus on sports car racing, having failed to score any points.
Aston Martin’s new F1 era will start on March 28 with the Bahrain Grand Prix. The 2021 F1 season was originally due to start on Mar. 21 with the Australian Grand Prix but organizers needed to reshuffle the calendar due to coronavirus restrictions. The Australian race will now take place toward the end of the season.
In other F1 news, Alpine (formerly Renault) named successful MotoGP manager Davide Brivio as team boss. He replaces Cyril Abiteboul who is leaving the team.