BMW Sauber F1.09 (2009) Abi Dhabi GP - Heidfeld
BMW Sauber’s contender for the 2009 Formula One season, the F1.09 was again driven by retained drivers Nick Heidfeld and Robert Kubica, the same duo who had been racing for BMW Sauber since mid-2006. After an impressive 2008 season, winning their first race and finishing third in the World Championship, much was expected of the F1.09, despite the raft of technical regulations brought in by the FIA to minimise the impact of the global financial crisis.
The F1.09’s initial development phase focused largely on the aerodynamics, the optimisation of tyre usage and the integration of KERS. Pre-season testing at Barcelona was promising, as the team clocked the fastest time on the first day. The season opener in Australia looked encouraging after Sebastian Vettel made a small error to allow Kubica to steal into second place, with two laps to go. However, Vettel braked early in defence, turning in too soon and locking his front wing on to sidepod of the BMW Sauber. Kubica lost his front wing, ultimately understeering off the circuit into the wall and out of the race. Heidfeld failed to score any points, finish tenth, after being caught up in a first lap incident involving three other cars. At the second race in Malaysia, Heidfeld provided the encouragement in a torrentially rain-soaked race that was abandoned after 32 laps, scoring the first podium of the season after qualifying eleventh. Heidfeld actually created history, becoming the first driver to take a podium position with a KERS-equipped car. Despite out-qualifying his teammate, Kubica retired after engine problems on the first lap.
After 6 races BMW Sauber had collected a mere 6 points, Heideld’s second place and a seventh place finish in Spain, and were 8th place in the Constructors' Championship. Upgrades were brought in for the Turkish GP, including an improved regenerative braking system (KERS) and a double deck diffuser. Whilst the new diffuser was implemented, the KERS could not be made to fit the new car and both drivers raced without the device. After the qualifying for the British GP, the team announced that the they had decided to halt further development KERS and focus instead on improving the car's aerodynamics. Kubica scored his first points in response, gaining a seventh place finish in Istanbul. As the car struggled for pace, at times it could barely scrape into Q2, both drivers would go on to express discontent with the slow development progress. During the summer break, BMW Sauber announced their withdrawal from Formula One, due to a lack of financial sustainability, though they admitted that the poor season had influenced their decision. The team would continue to compete until the end of season while the team searched for a buyer, who ultimately was the team’s former owner Peter Sauber.
The team performed better after the summer break, scoring points in each of the remaining seven races, including a double-points finish at Spa as the cars finished fourth and fifth. In fact, over the last seven races, the team earned over double the points from the first ten. The highlight was Kubica equalling Heidfeld’s second place result in Brazil after a strong drive from eighth on the grid, to gain his first and only podium of the season.
The F1.09 eventually finished sixth in the Constructors' Championship, with two podiums and 36 points to its name and holds the accolade as the last true BMW to race in Formula One.
This fine 1:8 scale model of the BMW Sauber F1.09 is as raced by Nick Heidfeld at Abu Dhabi on 1st November 2009. This model has been handcrafted and finished in our workshops with the co-operation and assistance of BMW Sauber regarding original finishes, materials, archive imagery and drawings. The use of supremely accurate digital scanning of the original car has allowed us to perfectly recreate every detail at scale. Furthermore, it has undergone detailed scrutiny by both engineering and design teams to ensure complete accuracy of representation. Every Amalgam 1:8 scale model is supplied in a luxury black presentation box and mounted on a carbon fibre or leather base protected by a clear acrylic dust cover. The model title, original branding and edition number are displayed on polished stainless steel plaques mounted at the front end of the base.
The BMW Sauber F1.09 is limited to just 99 pieces.
This model is part of the BMW Sauber Formula One Collection.
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