ALFA Romeo will return to Formula 1 racing this year after an absence of 33 years when it fields its new C37 cars under the  Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Team banner.

The just-unveiled C37s, to be driven by Marcus Ericsson and new ‘find’ Charles Leclerc, should be more competitive than last year’s Saubers after a lot of technical effort.

“I am very much looking forward to the 2018 season,” team principal Frédéric Vasseur said.

“We have put lots of hard work into the C37 in the last few months.

“Our target ahead of 2018 is clear: We have to catch up with the field and continue improving our performance during the course of the season.

“We have put lots of energy and commitment into the development of the C37.”

Alfa Romeo’s comeback restores one of the great names that have gone down in the history of motorsport’s premium championship.

It also marks the return of the Quadrifoglio, the legendary badge that has appeared on Alfa Romeo’s top performance cars since 1923.

Featured on the engine cover of the new C37, the famous good-luck charm has a fascinating history, deeply rooted in the racing world.

The first Alfa Romeo car to carry the Quadrifoglio was the RL driven by Ugo Sivocci which won the 15th edition of the Targa Florio in 1923.

It was also on Brilli Peri’s P2 when he won at Monza in 1925, gaining the first of Alfa Romeo’s five world titles.

It was present again in 1950 and 1951, when Nino Farina and Juan Manuel Fangio drove the Alfa Romeo 158 and 159 cars to success in the first two Formula 1 World Championships.

Buys

Bill Buys, probably Australia’s longest-serving motoring writer, has been at his craft for more than five decades. Athough motoring has always been in his DNA, he was also night crime reporter, foreign page editor and later chief reporter of the famed Rand Daily Mail. He’s twice been shot at, attacked by a rhinoceros and had several chilling experiences in aircraft. His experience includes stints in traffic law enforcement, motor racing and rallying and writing for a variety of local and international publications. He has covered countless events, ranging from world motor shows and Formula 1 Grands Prix to Targa tarmac and round-the-houses meetings. A motoring tragic, he has owned more than 90 cars. Somewhat of a nostalgic, he has a special interest in classic cars. He is the father of Targa star Robert Buys, who often adds his expertise to Bill’s reviews.