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Formula 1

Sauber Have Disappointing Sunday Afternoon in Korea

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Sergio Perez - Photo Credit: Sauber Motorsport AG

Sergio Perez - Photo Credit: Sauber Motorsport AG


Both Sauber drivers needed additional pit stops today in Korea after on-track incidents and, in thanks also to the relatively poor pace of the C30 around this track, could only finish P15 and P16.

Kamui Kobayashi was the highest placed of the two, but his description of the race was essentially just a list of incidents and problems:

“My start was okay, except I couldn't gain any positions,” said the Japanese driver. “When I was fighting with Sébastien Buemi our cars touched and the front wing was damaged. I changed to supersoft tyres after ten laps, as I had started on the softs. When the safety car came out we lost the advantage from the fresh tyres, as everyone was pitting then.

“I also had some damage to the rear wing, but I don't really know where this was from. At almost mid distance Bruno Senna was behind me and was pushing extremely hard, which actually resulted in a damaged front wing. Because of that my car was understeering a lot and the tyres were blistering. I then had to pit earlier than planned to replace the front wing.

“After the second stop I was able to overtake a couple of cars at the back of the field, but there was obviously no chance to score points today. We were just too slow, but we will go and work on it.”

Sergio Perez had tyre wear problems late on in the race, but concedes that the car was just too slow to finish in the top ten today.

“Initially my start was pretty good, but then I got stuck behind some other cars and the positions I gained were lost again,” said the Mexican. “In the beginning with the soft tyres it was quite good, but then with the supersoft tyres I struggled.

“During the last stint especially they degraded way too much. I had to pit and change them three laps before the end because the front right tyre had a hole in it, and you could see the casing. It was a shame, but there was no way I could have finished the race with those tyres. However, we didn't have the pace today to finish in the points.”

Giampaolo Dall’Ara, Head of Track Engineering at Sauber, explained that the main problem for the team this weekend in Korea was lack of performance.

“In qualifying we were already struggling with the pace, and today it was not any better,” he said. “We had hoped we would be able to fix some of the problems we had in practice with the grip, but we couldn't really improve the situation. For sure we had some incidents, but our main problem really was a lack of performance, as we were just slower than the competition. We tried to find a way through with our strategy, the drivers did a good job, but in the end we were not good enough. Now we have to react quickly.”

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David is an occasional contributer to the site on matters related to Formula 1. You can follow him on twitter at @Dr_Bean.
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