Latest F1 news in brief - Friday UPDATE Updates show in red below.
|New Red Bull to launch|
- Red Bull to launch two days before Jerez test
- No F1 agreement for 'Fanvision' in 2013
- Ferrari adds British aero man to F1 ranks
- Raikkonen could have kept improving in rally - Hirvonen
- De Villota continues motorsport activities New
- Sergio Perez insists he's more than capable of being a strong qualifier at McLaren New
- Bottas has time to reach full potential - Wolff New
Red Bull to launch two days before Jerez test
(GMM) Red Bull has announced that this year's single seater, the RB9, will be unveiled on 3 February.
With the 'launch' set to take place at the team's Milton Keynes (UK) headquarters, 3 February is the Sunday prior to Tuesday's opening day of winter testing.
It gives the reigning champions only two days to travel to Jerez, Spain, for the opening day of running.
But there has been speculation designer Adrian Newey, who admits he is behind schedule with the RB9's development, could elect to begin the pre-season period with the team's title-winning 2012 car.
"The RB9 will be unveiled on Sunday 3 February in Milton Keynes ahead of the first test in Jerez," Red Bull announced on Twitter.
"More details to follow."
No F1 agreement for 'Fanvision' in 2013
(GMM) A system allowing trackside spectators and on-site reporters to access video, audio and data with a bespoke handheld device will not be available at grands prix in 2013.
Fanvision, originally launched as Kangaroo TV some years ago, announced on Thursday it has been unable to reach a new agreement with FOM (Formula One Management), headed by F1 chief executive Bernie Ecclestone.
"Unfortunately it is clear that we are not going to be able to agree terms with FOM and very reluctantly we have to confirm that we won't be in F1 in 2013," a statement released by Fanvision said.
"It's a big blow for us."
Ferrari adds British aero man to F1 ranks
(GMM) Ferrari has added a Briton to its ranks.
Acknowledging its aerodynamic weaknesses, the fabled Italian team last year signed well-known F1 aerodynamicist Loic Bigois to switch from Mercedes.
Ferrari is currently developing its 2013 car, probably to be called the F2013, in Toyota's state-of-the-art Cologne wind tunnel, while the Maranello facility is closed and improved.
At the same time, Autosprint reports that the scarlet-clad team has signed Martin Bester.
The Briton's last post was as Williams' aerodynamics team leader.
He has also worked for BMW and McLaren's F1 teams.
Prior to working at Mercedes, chief aerodynamicist and Frenchman Bigois worked alongside Bester at Williams, the Italian magazine added.
Raikkonen could have kept improving in rally - Hirvonen
(GMM) Mikko Hirvonen, the 2012 world rally championship runner up, believes countryman Kimi Raikkonen would have kept improving had he stayed in rallying.
Finn Raikkonen, F1's 2007 world champion who has driven for top teams McLaren and Ferrari, finished the 2012 season in third place as he made his return to the sport.
In 2010 and 2011, following his split with Ferrari to make way for Fernando Alonso, the now 33-year-old opted to try his hand at world rallying.
Speaking about Raikkonen's competitive return to F1 last year with Lotus after two seasons away, Hirvonen said: "Well, it was not really a surprise.
"This man knows how to drive F1 (cars). When I heard he was going back, I thought that if the car is good, he will survive -- and Kimi did very well," he told Turun Sanomat newspaper.
But Hirvonen thinks Raikkonen would have kept improving had he stayed in rallying.
"The results would certainly have improved, but how much would have depended on how much enthusiasm Kimi had for practicing and testing.
"But his pace would definitely have improved in the third season," he added.
De Villota continues motorsport activities
María de Villota has recovered sufficiently to continue her motorsport activities, joining the Royal Spanish Automobile Federation for its first board meeting of the year.
De Villota, who suffered life-threatening injuries during a freak testing crash with the Marussia Formula 1 team last summer, was present at the National Sports Council in Madrid to discuss a wide range of topics related to Spanish motor racing.
Silvia Bellot, Formula 1's only female driver steward, is also a member federation, while Pedro de la Rosa, who has made 105 Grand Prix starts, holds an advisory role.
Sergio Perez insists he's more than capable of being a strong qualifier at McLaren
Sergio Perez says improving his qualifying results is something he needs to work on now he's joined McLaren - but insists he "isn't worried" about his single-lap performance.
The Mexican's form throughout a complete race weekend is set to come under more scrutiny in 2013 having joined a front-running team with many observers already expressing concerns about his qualifying pace relative to the man he has replaced at Woking, Lewis Hamilton.
While Hamilton is considered by many to be the outright fastest drivers in F1, and claimed seven poles during the course of his final season with McLaren, Perez's only pipped Kamui Kobayashi in their Saturday head-to-head at Sauber in 2012 and has built his reputation on stronger race performances from the middle of the pack.
Asked in an interview with reporters in London on his first official day of duty at McLaren if he agreed that qualifying was an area he needed to work on, the 22-year-old replied: "I think obviously it's something to improve. It's not like when you go into a top car you will be in pole position.
"It's work to do but I'm not worried about the qualifying pace.
"I can be up there if I put everything into place. I can maximize the potential of the car so that's the most important thing as a driver."
Bottas has time to reach full potential - Wolff
(GMM) Williams will give Valtteri Bottas at least half a season to get up to speed.
After a full season of preparation as the famous British team's reserve driver last year, practicing on most Friday mornings at grands prix, 22-year-old rookie Bottas will make his full time race debut in 2013.
The young Finn can't wait.
"Well, it was mentally tough," he told the MTV3 broadcaster, referring to 2012.
"At the end of practice just when I had found a rhythm in the car I then had to give it back. And I knew that I would have kept improving if only I could have driven more," said Bottas.
"As I then watched the race, of course I thought about what I might have been able to do. It was not so easy.
"Especially the weekends where I could not drive at all -- they were very long," he smiled.
The team, however, will be urging Bottas to be patient. Williams co-owner Toto Wolff, who is also involved in the young driver's management, said the 22-year-old will enjoy some "puppy protection".
"He needs mileage and racing experience," he told Motorsport Aktuell, a Swiss weekly.
"He is very fast and extremely intelligent," Austrian Wolff insisted, "but we have to give him the right environment so that he can realize his potential.
"We can't assume that he will be on the second row in Melbourne, even if the car is capable of it," he continued.
"I believe he can get the full potential from the car by the middle of the season."