Kamui Kobayashi declared himself pleased after finishing ninth in the Brazilian Grand Prix, as the Sauber team recovered from a poor final qualifying session of the year.
The Japanese driver lined up 16th on the grid but came home ninth to score two points, leaving the Swiss team three ahead of Toro Rosso in the close battle for seventh in the constructors' championship.
“The team did a very good job to recover from a really bad qualifying,” said Kobayashi. “I had a good start and also a good race pace. We worked a lot on the race pace and I'm happy that I was able to score in the final two races of the season. It was important for us to finish ahead of Toro Rosso and I'm glad we managed to do that.
“The strategy was good and the car was as well – many thanks to the guys. After we have struggled a bit in the second half of the season, we have a lot to work on over the winter. I think it is good that we will have the same team with the same drivers again, but we want to become stronger.”
Teammate Sergio Perez finished 13th, his result not being helped by a mid-race spin.
“The team's main target for today was to make sure we finished the season in seventh, and I am very happy that this was achieved, although I couldn't contribute this time,” said the Mexican.
“As a team I think we are all already looking forward to the next season. After all that has happened I am happy with my rookie season. I have learned a lot and with this experience I want to do a good job in 2012. However, my race today wasn't as good as I hoped it would be. The start was fine, but we had opted for wet conditions and the result was that the rear tyres tended to overheat. The car was quite difficult to drive and I'm sorry for the spin at half distance.”
Team principal Peter Sauber commented: “It was an important result today. We were able to move up one position in the constructors' championship compared to last year, which is good for the morale of the team. Kamui drove a fantastic race, making up positions in the early laps and then driving fast and consistently to take two championship points. Thanks to the whole team at the track, in Hinwil and to our partner Ferrari.”