The first car under the new Visa Cash App RB name – the VCARB 01 – has been revealed at a lavish event in Las Vegas.
The former AlphaTauri team has been rebranded under the ‘Racing Bulls’ moniker this season, with Visa and Cash App joining forces as title partners. Due to Visa’s partnerships with the NFL and the Super Bowl being held in Las Vegas on Sunday, the team launch took place on Thursday night on the iconic Strip.
The VCARB 01 showcases the team’s new identity, that has aspects of the former Toro Rosso colors due to the blue and silver elements, but white and red additions stand out in the design.
In contrast to Alpine’s launch a day earlier, the team did not offer too much detail in terms of the technical developments made to the car over the winter, although aspects of the all-conquering Red Bull design can be seen in the sidepods. VCARB is taking a number of components from its parent team where permitted in the regulations.
Drivers Daniel Ricciardo and Yuki Tsunoda were joined by the team’s CEO Peter Bayer and new team principal Laurent Mekies who replaced Franz Tost at the end of last season. Also present was the team’s F1 Academy driver Amna Al-Qubaisi, while F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali also made an appearance.
While the team name has not been universally welcomed, Ricciardo says fans are overlooking the importance of sponsors to a team.
“Let me say this, people have to understand one thing,” Ricciardo told RACER. “They say ‘Ah, the name, what is that? Why would you call it that?’ All these things. It’s like, you understand what partners do, right? They pay money, to support the team, to help us go forward, and therefore they can call it whatever they want! Quite frankly, their support is awesome and I love it! So I’m totally fine with the name, I love it. That’s how it works!”
In its former guise of AlphaTauri, the team finished eighth in the constructors’ championship last season, recovering from a slow start that saw it score just five points in the opening 17 rounds to finish strongly and end up with 25 points in total, three adrift of Williams in seventh place.