Kamui Kobayashi believes he has the capability to challenge for a maiden Formula One podium at his home Grand Prix tomorrow. The Sauber driver was fourth fastest in qualifying but Jenson Button’s grid penalty promotes him to third and he is hoping to reward his patriotic supporters with a result to remember.
“I am happy because I think I achieved the maximum possible today. On my last lap I lost a bit of time because of the yellow flag when I backed off and switched off the DRS. I want to thank the team for the big step forward they have managed with the car since Friday. In the beginning we were struggling with the new parts but now we have got it right. After quite a few changes to the settings the car is fast again. From where I am starting I should have a chance to fight for a podium finish, and it would be a dream come true if I could achieve my first podium in Formula One in front of my home crowd. But first of all I have to manage a good start, and then I should have more luck than in Spa this year where I started from the front row but got involved in an accident.“
Completing an excellent day for the Swiss outfit, teammate Sergio Perez secured fifth on the grid and the Mexican will head into tomorrow’s race with similar aspirations to Kobayashi.
“My last lap in Q3 wasn’t perfect but still good. I am very happy for the team that we have achieved such a strong qualifying result today. They have done a great job because initially on Friday here we were really lacking pace. It was a strong and speedy recovery and I’m confident tomorrow in the race we will be able to fight for another podium.”