Mike Stevens | Feb 3, 2010

THE ROAD TO A 2010 Formula 1 berth for Sauber has been a touch-and-go affair. This week, after scraping together the funds to buy his team back from BMW late last year, Peter Sauber has today revealed the Ferrari-powered BMW Sauber C29.

While steerers Kamui Kobayashi and Pedro de la Rosa were on hand to help Sauber unveil the team's 2010 challenger, sponsors were noticeably absent from the car and drivers' race suits.

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While the car's spartan look is reminiscent of the Brawn GP team in 2009, Sauber says he's happy just to have his team on the grid in 2010, with or without sponsorship.

"The last few months have been very intense for us," Mr Sauber said at the unveiling.

"First we had to battle to secure the survival of the team and then we focused on putting a strong set-up in place for the future".

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Sauber said his team has a long tradition of pairing young up-and-coming drivers with experienced campaigners, and it's an approach the team will continue with the 23 year-old Kobayashi and 38 year-old de la Rosa.

"Pedro has been working at the highest level technically for many years and for a top team, and we can benefit as a team from this experience. Young Kamui also has a lot to offer us, and last year he impressed me particularly in Abu Dhabi."

BMW Sauber technical director Willy Rampf pointed to C29's raised nose as one of the car's more eye-catching features, as well as the extremely long undercut where the chassis transitions into the underbody - both features directing air to the controversial (but seemingly standard fare for 2010) double diffuser.

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As with many of the other teams on the grid this year, the C29 utilises a shark fin-like dorsal fine atop the engine hood.

Other internal changes have been made to accommodate the switch to a Ferrari engine and transmission.

Of course, the phrase 'Ferrari-powered BMW Sauber' might sound odd, given BMW's exit from Formula 1. For now, the team must maintain its previous name until an application to drop the 'BMW' has been approved by the FIA.

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