Sauber founder Peter Sauber has admitted that the exclusion of his surname from Formula 1 "hurts", but did concede that it was what was best for the team, which will now be known as Alfa Romeo Racing in the 2019 F1 season.
The 75-year-old Swiss, no longer involved with the Hinwil based team he founded, was on hand in Barcelona as the new 'Alfa Romeo' made its test debut.
"Of course it hurts that the Sauber name disappears after such a long time," he told CH Media.
"But the name is only gone from formula one. The company is 49 years old and will enter its 50th season in 2019."
Indeed, the name Sauber can still be spotted on the Alfa livery, and Switzerland is featured on the rear wing.
"And there's another side to it," Peter Sauber added. "For the team, changing the name to Alfa Romeo is a good thing. Otherwise, the owners would not have done it.
"And what is good for the team is also good from my perspective. I also did many things that were difficult but in the best interests of the team."
Another tribute to Sauber is that the new Alfa Romeo is called the C38, with the 'C' still a reference to Peter Sauber's wife Christiane.
And Peter Sauber noted: "Between 2006 and 2009 we built the F1 cars for BMW. Now it's Alfa Romeo.
"Sauber is also still registered as the manufacturer with the FIA, and neither the ownership or the management will change that," he added.
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