The 'launch season' is all but on us again. Great news if you've had your fill of Christmas pud, you're a duffer at fixing broken toys and you'd really like to see your mates again and talk F1. Not so good if you've lost your can of bullshit repellent and are quite happy taking your steers from the Melbourne timing screens.
Formula One being what it is, launches are much more 'corporate' these days, which means people are more nervous about getting up in public and making rash statements. They know that some smart arse journalist is going to keep a note of any predictions/expectations and trot them out nine months down the road.
In days gone by, when a race team was a race team, they didn't care. Generally, there was no one to answer to, save perhaps a couple of sponsors. But these days you have board members and bean counters listening. Caution seems to be the watchword.
There have been some good laughs in the past. Turn the clock back 30 years and there was Robin Herd and Martin Walters revealing the March 240. Early December this was, because in those days the Argentine Grand Prix kicked off the new season in January.