German GP: Race notes - Sauber


The Sauber F1 Team once again managed to score one point. Despite a safety car period during the German Grand Prix, which did not help the strategy of either driver, Nico Hulkenberg managed to secure tenth, overtaking Paul di Resta on the penultimate lap of the race. Esteban Gutierrez finished 14th. Overall, the result was not what the team expected after a strong qualifying yesterday. Nevertheless, this weekend was a step in the right direction.

Nico Hulkenberg: "It was an extremely tough race. I was fighting on every lap, but this is what we were able to get out of it. To be honest, I expected we would have better pace today, but we didn't. The car didn't feel as good as I expected it would either. I thought, and hoped, we could fight with McLaren, but, unfortunately, they were too fast for us today. It was a race with a lot of overtaking and wheel-to-wheel battles, which are always fun. However, having to fight for positions all the time is never good for the strategy, as it's tough on the tyres and you loose time. Nevertheless, this weekend was better than the previous ones. We didn't have an update on the car, we experimented with the set-up, which worked well."

Esteban Gutierrez: "From the beginning to the end we were fighting for positions, so it was a very tough race. It was difficult to overtake, because we were lacking speed on the straights. My rhythm was quite reasonable and I tried to do my best. The strategy wasn't ideal, although everything went to plan, but we pitted just before the safety car, which didn't make it any easier."

Monisha Kaltenborn, Team Principal: "One point is not exactly what we expected after a strong qualifying, but the safety car period didn't play into our hands. Nevertheless, we move on to the test in Silverstone and to the next Grand Prix with confidence. We were able to improve, particularly in qualifying, and we want to continue to improve. Nico delivered a strong performance. The last stint particularly was absolutely thrilling. Of course, we are not where we want to be, but we made a step in the right direction."

Tom McCullough, Head of Track Engineering: "We elected to split the strategies with the tyres at the start. Esteban started on the soft tyres, Nico on the medium. Unfortunately, the timing of the safety car was at the worst moment for us as a team - eight laps into Nico's second stint on the medium tyres and immediately Esteban had pitted. Therefore, it was going to be difficult to recover and score points from there. Nico did a good job in the last stint to get tenth place, which is good for the morale of the team."

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Published: 07/07/2013
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